STAR Institute Response to Covid-19

Visit our Covid-19 FAQ page here

8/3/2021 - UPDATE

DOWNLOAD FULL COVID19 POLICY PDF HERE | Update Announcement

STAR Institute is dedicated to the health, well-being and safety of its staff, clients, and client families. In keeping with the most current Public Health Orders from state and local health authorities, and under advisement from TriCounty health and the CDPHE, STAR Institute, as a healthcare provider, is able to maintain in-person and telehealth services for its clientele.

These mandatory guidelines are designed to protect YOU, our staff, and the medically vulnerable clients that are seen for essential services at STAR Institute.

Telehealth Services

Telehealth services are available to any and all of STAR Institute’s clients and families and are the preferable means of delivery therapy at this time. Services include (but are not limited to) one-to-one treatment sessions, parent education meetings, group sessions, and consultations. Families are encouraged to contact a STAR Institute Lead Therapist to develop a telehealth program to meet the client’s and family’s needs.

Please contact:

lindsay.fogerty@sensoryhealth.org | maura.mooneyham@sensoryhealth.org for Occupational Therapy
carrie.dishlip@sensoryhealth.org for Speech and Language Therapy
rachel.balderamma@sensoryhealth.org for Mental Health & Feeding Services

In-Person Services

In-person services are open to all and suitable for any person who does not feel that telehealth support will meet their family needs. Situations that would support in-person services include (but may not be limited to) medical necessity, overall health and well-being of the family unit (including emotional well-being and occupational well-being), and/or disruption of the intensive and potent sensory/sensory-motor modalities used during in-person sessions is deemed to significantly undermine the client’s overall health and well-being causing undue distress, behaviors, or dysfunction.

STAR staff, STAR providers, STAR clients and STAR client families participating in in-person services agree to strictly follow social distancing guidelines in totality at all times while not at STAR - please review the following points and initial / sign to acknowledge your agreement with the terms outlined.

Please initial each statement to indicate you acknowledge and agree to the terms:

  • Colorado Families: 3-7 days prior to your family’s eval/program starting you and everyone planning to attend STAR Institute must test for COVID-19 AND be symptom-free. Please share copies of negative test results with your clinician or a member of the STAR Institute front desk team to be added to your client records.

  • Out of State Families: You may begin sessions at STAR while monitoring symptoms and remaining symptom-free. You will need to be tested 3-5 days after arriving in Colorado and provide proof of your negative results as soon as possible, to be added to your client records. (Testing needs to be completed after 3-5 days due to the incubation period of COVID-19; premature testing may not provide reliable results.)

  • International Families: Please quarantine “to the extent possible” for 10 days prior to eval/program.
  • COVID-19 Vaccinated Families (all adults in household fully vaccinated): Sessions may begin at STAR with FULL compliance of social distancing guidelines, including masks and social distancing. Please share copies of vaccine cards with your clinician or a member of the STAR Institute front desk team to be added to your client records.

    Testing is not needed, but ANY symptoms should be reported and assumed as COVID, as testing is not proven reliable in these situations. (Vaccinated individuals may still be possible transmitters of COVID-19 and individuals should continue to closely monitor symptoms and social distancing during their time at STAR.)
    ​​​​​​​
  • If an unvaccinated STAR provider, client or family member has been exposed to any confirmed case of Covid19 in the last 10 days the session must be canceled*

    If the vaccinated STAR provider, client or family has been directly exposed to any confirmed case of Covid19 they must quarantine, get tested 3-5 days after exposure, and show proof of a negative test before resuming sessions.

    Exposure is defined as being within 6 feet, for more than 15 minutes, without full PPE (including gloves and eye protection).

  • Upon arrival at STAR, check the temperature of everyone who will be entering the building. If any individual has an elevated temperature above typical for the individual, the session must be canceled (see note on suspected Covid below).
  • STAR staff, providers, clients and client family members will adhere to and maintain current Colorado social distancing guidelines (wearing a mask in public, recommended 6 feet apart) for the full duration of your STAR program, as well as during sessions (as appropriate and reasonable for effective service delivery).

    • MINIMIZE social contact - wear a mask, wash hands often, keep 6’ away from others.

    • If a playground/splash pad visit is essential for health and wellness wear masks and use hand sanitizer regularly, visit playgrounds at off peak times, stay 6’ away from other children.

    • For pools follow state and county guidelines, wear masks whenever you are in a communal space and not in the water.

    • Stay home as much as possible. For larger group gatherings wear masks, maintain 6’ distancing at all times.

  • STAR staff, providers, clients and client family members wash hands, for at least 20 seconds, immediately before and after service delivery, and as often as necessary during service delivery.

  • Onsite at all times STAR providers and parents will wear facial masks unless mitigating circumstances preclude use (and gloves if necessary). Children over 3 years will wear masks if tolerable. Avoid touching your face and wash hands after doing so.

  • STAR staff and providers will clean all client areas, treatment areas, and equipment following each treatment as outlined by STAR Institute administration. Equipment that is waiting to be cleaned will be placed to the side and considered out of service.

* Treatment can resume after 10 days quarantine has been observed
** See note on resuming services following suspected Covid19 below
✝ Even if you suspect allergies or other benign causes

 

Travel, please initial to indicate you acknowledge and agree to these terms:

  • Avoid all non-essential air travel for the duration of your child’s program at STAR Institute. If you must travel, review the CDC’s specific guidance for travelers.
     
  • You may resume sessions at STAR while monitoring symptoms and remaining symptom-free. You will need to be tested 5 days after return from out of state travel and provide proof of your negative results as soon as possible, to be added to your client records. After international travel, quarantine “to the extent possible” for 10 days.

You are responsible for maintaining these standards throughout your treatment program at STAR Institute and must inform STAR if you are unable to do so for any reason / your circumstances change.

Per CDC guidelines STAR prefers PCR testing for optimum accuracy of results and highly encourages clients pursue this kind of testing.

 

Suspected Covid19
If any member of the household is suspected to have Covid-19 onsite treatment can only resume after:

Symptom-based strategy.

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath); and,
  • At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared, and
  • Symptoms have improved

Test-based strategy


How to wash your hands
cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html

Washing your hands is easy and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout an entire community - from your home and workplace to childcare facilities and hospitals.

Follow these five steps every time:

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  2. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
  4. Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

*STAR Well Child Policy: 

If your child is sick with a temperature of 100° or more, a cough, or has vomited in the past 24 hours, call and cancel your child’s appointment. Your child will not benefit from therapy if he or she is ill. Our gym must be germ-free to maintain the health of our clients and staff. If your child is not well enough to go to school, he/she is not well enough to attend therapy. If you arrive for a session during which the OT determines your child is too sick to participate in treatment (coughing, feverish), your session will be canceled and you will be charged at 50% of your therapy rate.
 


We have a working group focused on monitoring the situation in real-time and relaying information from Tri-County, the CDC, Colorado Dept of Health and World Health Organization to the executive team and organization staff.

As Arapahoe County residents Tri-County is our official source for up-to-date COVID-19 information (https://www.tchd.org). You can access this site for the latest factual information for our area.

STAR Institute will proactively monitor the situation and continue to send information, resources and updates and keep you posted as the situation changes. 


Urgent appeal - Help us maintain services and accessibility!

The ongoing restrictions around travel and group gatherings are having a significant impact on STAR Institute. Many of our families are not able to come for treatment services at this time, and several of STAR Institute's educational programs have had to be canceled. This is a time of crisis for STAR and our ability to keep our work going given the sharp curtailing of income for the Institute.

Please know that STAR Institute is doing everything it can to proactively address the situations. For example, we are attempting to put as many educational programs on line as possible through the Education Department, and our clinicians are using video conferencing as much as possible. You can also read about the precautions we are taking onsite to keep everyone safe here. Even with these measures, STAR Institute finds itself in a precarious position.

Please consider donating $20, or whatever you feel comfortable with, to STAR Institute today to help us keep true to our mission of support and accessibility to families and professionals worldwide during this Covid-19 crisis. 

Donate Now


As Arapahoe County residents Tri-County is our official source for up-to-date COVID-19 information (https://www.tchd.org). You can access this site for the latest factual information for our area.

Other resources:

Center for Disease Control Website: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Website: www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/2019-novel-coronavirus

Colorado Department of Education Resources: www.cde.state.co.us/communications/saferschools