Koinonia Responds to Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

As we face an unprecedented pandemic in our community, Koinonia is moving quickly to put our emergency plans into action. We have established an internal COVID-19 Task force which meets daily to assess the situation as it progresses and develop/revise necessary contingency plans. We remain vigilant and abide by the best advice of the local, state, and federal governments, the CDC, public health authorities, and medical experts to maintain a safe environment for our individuals and a safe workplace for our employees.  We remain steadfast and committed to our mission. Check our daily updates below.

 Are you looking for temporary work because your regular job was interrupted by COVID-19?
We are hiring temporary Direct Support Professionals at $14.00 per hour! CLICK HERE to learn more. Flexible schedules available, hiring throughout Cuyahoga and Summit Counties.

Want to learn more about how you can support Koinonia during this time? Click the button below!

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Update: Monday, June 24th

For the past two months we have been mired in the ever-changing regulations, policies, and procedures that have come about due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  For the past two months we have been mired in the ever-changing regulations, policies, and procedures that have come about due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  In regards to visiting your loved ones under our care, we are aware of the difficulties you have suffered by not being able to visit your individual over the past couple of months.

We are pleased to roll out limited, phase 1 outdoor visitation opportunities in our homes, but unfortunately, they come with their own infection control protocols that must be strictly followed to ensure the health and safety of everyone.

Please know that we are guided by Governor DeWine’s May 28th updated guidelines for ensuring safe visitation practices and DODD (Department of Developmental Disabilities) recommendations when creating the enclosed document, “Phase 1 Visitor Guidance for Safe Home Visitations.” The protocols include but are not limited to:

  • Families, guardians, and/or visitors will be allowed to visit outside, if all the guidelines listed in the Phase 1 Visitor Guidelines document are followed, please take the time to carefully read them.
  • Visits need to be scheduled 24 hours in advance and are limited to two consecutive hours per day.
  • Visitors must wear a mask that they provide, commit to temperature screening procedures, conduct routine hand hygiene, and practice social distancing.
  • Visit access inside our homes is not yet authorized. Restrictions to groups of no more than 10 people are still in place.

Please know that visitations may be denied or will end if visitors fail to follow established guidelines or if individual issues arise. Koinonia asks that you respect our guidelines and work with us until we can move to fewer restrictions.

Phase 1 visitor policies will be in place across all Koinonia residences until additional State and DODD amended orders are received. Future phases for modifying safe visiting will also be contingent on:

  • No significant increased cases in Ohio (second surge) that impacts local hospital capacity
  • No increase in positive cases within Koinonia
  • No staffing shortages that would impact the ability to ensure successful visitations
  • Adequate agency access to needed PPE

If after reviewing the guidelines you have questions, please contact the appropriate Program Director or the Chief Program Officer as listed below:

  • Lina Workman, Director of ICF (216) 262-0841
  • Patti Matzinger, Director of Waiver Services (216) 338-3110
  • Andrea Dobrin, Chief Program Officer (216) 276-6622

Update: Monday, March 23rd

This weekend, Governor Mike DeWine announced that Dr. Amy Acton, director of the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), issued a mandatory stay-at-home order effective March 23, 2020, at 11:59 PM. You may be asking, “What does this mean for Koinonia?”

The order states that services in Ohio’s developmental disabilities system are essential activities that should continue to be provided, and that travel is allowed to provide and receive those services. Under this order, our staff at Koinonia are considered essential for the delivery of services we provide to our individuals. Associates have been provided with an “essential employee status notice” that will be carried on them when traveling.

Update: Thursday, March 20th 2020

Koinonia is seeking to hire temporary workers to fill direct support positions during the COVID-19 outbreak. Training is provided and the pay is $14.00 per hour. This is a great opportunity for someone to find immediate employment whose regular job has been interrupted because of COVID-19. CLICK HERE to apply and learn more.

Effective 3/19/20 until further notice, we are restricting access to our sites. Alongside this measure, we can no longer allow individuals to leave their site for extended visits with family. This was a very difficult decision for us however, it is a necessary decision as we are doing everything possible to protect our individuals and staff from exposure.

Update: Wednesday, March 18th 2020

We are restricting access points at all of our sites to a single point of entry. At these entry points, employees and contractors will be screened in accordance with our screening guidelines.

Our KE program will be closed until further notice. We will be assessing the status of this program based on regulatory and environmental factors. Our initial assessment will be on or before April 24, 2020 and we will provide an update shortly thereafter

Update: Tuesday, March 17th 2020

Our COVID-19 Task Force continues to meet on a daily basis to assess the situation as it progresses. Our main priority has been, and will continue to be, the health and well-being of our individuals and staff. Below is the latest updates and precautionary measures that our task force has put in place.

  1. We took an inventory of all of our homes and was able to replenish critical supplies like batteries, thermometers, etc.
  2. We are relying on virtual meetings, surveys and electronic forms to capture the information we need from the front lines to make quick decisions around prevention and safety.
  3. We are still in need of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at all of our sites, this seems to be the case for most agencies in the community. Our Director of Nursing is following up with her contacts to find PPE vendors who may have supplies available.
  4. The Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) has created COVID-19 screening protocol for providers requiring associates entering any residential setting to self-screen every day on every shift.
    • Koinonia has developed a health screening form that is currently being distributed to each home. All associates need to complete this screening form everyday at the beginning of every shift and submit to their supervisor. If they answered yes to any of the questions on screening form, they are to not enter the home and should contact their supervisor.
  5. We are required to have every person entering a residential setting sign-in on a written log and this includes associates.

We are continuing to monitor the situation as it progresses. We remain vigilant and abide by the best advice of the local, state, and federal governments, the CDC, public health authorities, and medical experts to maintain a safe environment for our individuals and a safe workplace for our employees.

Update: Friday, March 13th 2020:

The health and well-being of our individuals and staff is our main priority. In light of recent news regarding the spread of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) around Ohio, our task force decided to implement some precautionary measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 exposure at our organization.

  1. We have closed both of our adult day centers beginning March 16th through March 27th. During this time, we will reassess the need to extend the closures and the protocols for re-opening. We have redeployed the staff to our homes.
  2. All staff have received training on infection control and proper sanitation protocols, and additional specific training on COVID-19 had been instituted. Training will continue as needed and additional informational resources and guidelines are being made available.
  3. Employees exhibiting symptoms of illness will not be permitted to work until they contact a physician and are medically cleared. We are actively developing protocols around employee exposure to COVID-19, in accordance with public health recommendations.
  4. We are following state health official recommendations for nursing homes and assisted living facilities “to reflect that no visitors will be admitted.” Please know family members are always free to pick up their individual and take them out or take them to their homes for a planned visit. Telephone calls, Facetime, and Skype are other options to keep in contact.
  5. We recognize that the current situation puts a strain on our staff, many of whom are faced with a sudden loss of childcare and other financial hardships surrounding the pandemic. Our task force is actively working on ways to support the health and well-being of our staff and removing any roadblocks that prevents their ability to continue to work. We are also exploring other options to provide additional temporary staffing assistance in the field.

We are currently building an FAQ page for employees, parents, and guardians. Do you have a question that you feel we should address? Please CONTACT US