Dear Friend of Council for Relationships:
We continue to hope that you and yours are well. This is a follow up to my message of March 12th and we ask that you watch for these messages/check back on our website for updates as what’s happening with COVID-19 is rapidly changing.
The health and wellness of our clients, students and staff are our top priority, and therefore, limiting the spread of COVID-19 in our communities and among our most vulnerable members is of utmost importance.
As of 5pm today (Monday, March 16, 2020) Council for Relationships is “defaulting” to all services and work being done “distantly or virtually.” This means that clinical sessions should be done using Online Therapy (or phone, if necessary) and staff should work from home.
There will be exceptions to the “default” and clients should communicate with their clinician about their circumstances and if it will be possible to have an in-person session. This should happen only if absolutely necessary.
In terms of our interns, most of the interns enrolled in our Post-Graduate Couple and Family Therapy Certificate program are already able to see clients through Online Therapy. Thomas Jefferson University’s College of Health Professions has suspended student/intern presence at clinical practice sites, however we are working to have our Master’s of Couple and Family Therapy students/interns (which we offer in partnership with Jefferson) begin to provide Online Therapy as possible. More information about this is forthcoming.
Key CFR staff members are continuing to have a daily phone call (and more frequent calls as needed) to review the latest information about the spread of COVID-19, and then discuss any changes that may be needed in our clinical work, education programs, and other activities. While the information continues to be fluid as we monitor what is happening at the local, state and federal levels, we will provide updates about our activities through similar emails and/or on our website at www.councilforrelationships.org.
We are working to provide resources that will help the community cope with challenges they may be facing in these circumstances. We hope you saw the well-received blogpost by our Medical Director, Jane Summers, MD, about coping with COVID-19; if you did not, you can find it at this link: https://councilforrelationships.org/coping-with-covid-19/
In the meantime, we continue to send our best wishes to everyone and hope that the challenges related to COVID-19 will soon be behind us all.
March 16, 2020
Dear Friend of Council for Relationships:
We hope that you and yours are well.
As of today (Wednesday, March 12, 2020) we continue to encourage all members of our community (staff, students/interns, clients, and vendors) to comply with guidelines from the CDC regarding our shared spaces at CFR’s 10 locations. Specifically:
Individuals who have traveled to a level 2 or 3 country (currently China, Italy, Iran, South Korea or Japan) are asked to refrain from working/attending sessions/events at CFR in person for 14 days upon returning to the United States. In addition, we are asking anyone having traveled to an area with “state-of-emergency” status to take additional precautions prior to returning to work/being seen by a therapist or attending any activity at CFR. Specifically, individuals are requested to remain at home should they be experiencing respiratory symptoms, cold or flu-like symptoms, a fever, etc.
The following is a link to CDC COVID-19 guidelines (which may have additional helpful updates which should be followed): https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/index.html
We understand that clients and clinicians may feel the need to reduce their risk of COVID-19 exposure. In these circumstances, a client may wish to communicate with their clinician (therapist or psychiatrist) about the possibility of using CFR’s Online Therapy and, if Online Therapy is not an option, having sessions by phone. (Clients are encouraged to check with their insurance provider about what will be reimbursed for various types of sessions, if that is a concern.)
Key CFR staff members are having a daily phone call (and more frequently as needed) to review the latest information about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), and then discuss any changes/accommodations that may be needed in our clinical work, education programs, and other activities. While the information continues to be fluid, we will provide updates as we have them, typically on our website at www.councilforrelationships.org.
We will continue to monitor local, state, and federal recommendations and will do our best to update our guidelines as necessary. In addition, we are working to provide resources that will help the community cope with challenges they may be facing in these circumstances; please check our website for such resources.
In the meantime, we send our best wishes to everyone and hope that the challenges being faced by COVID-19 will soon be behind us all.
March 12, 2020