LSSI's Continued Response to COVID-19
At LSSI, the health and safety of our clients and staff are of the utmost importance. The past six months have been challenging for all of us, as our society is adjusting to new ways of operating in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As LSSI moves to resume the full spectrum of its services, the infection control practices below will assist all of us in preventing and stopping the spread of COVID-19. We ask that you read the information on this page carefully and contact us if you have questions.
We encourage clients who feel sick, are coughing or have a fever, or who have been in contact with someone who is sick or positive for COVID-19 to please stay home and utilize LSSI's telehealth services.
Upon entering LSSI offices, clients must:
- Answer a pre-screening survey.
- Have their body temperature taken.
- Wear a face mask. If clients do not have a mask, LSSI will provide one.
Additionally, while in the office, clients are encouraged to:
- Wash/sanitize hands frequently.
- Follow LSSI signs and markers to observe social distancing.
To ensure the safety of our clients, LSSI is following the strict CDC guidelines which include universal masking, social distancing, and frequent cleaning. For admission to the residential/inpatient substance use programs, LSSI is following recommended IDPH COVID-19 testing protocols and screenings. In addition, each of our residential/inpatient substance use programs has implemented protocols for on-going testing and screening to ensure the safety of clients during their stay. Call the contact information on the program's webpage to learn more about how the program is specifically keeping clients safe.
Many of LSSI's staff visit clients in their home or in the community. The same safety guidelines for office visits apply.
For meetings in the community:
- Staff will try to find an outdoor location or a location with good ventilation/air flow where they can safely meet with you.
- Masks are worn the entire visit. For clients who have family members at home, they also must wear masks.
- Staff will use hand sanitizer or request to wash hands, upon entering a client's home.
- Staff will refrain from accepting offered beverages, food, or any other items from the home.
Additionally, clients are encouraged to:
- Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water before LSSI staff arrives and after they leave.
- Clean and disinfect any high touch areas before and after LSSI staff arrives.
As LSSI staff may visit several clients each day, these measures are for our clients’ protection as well as for that of our staff.
Biological parents visiting with their children in foster care must follow similar safety guidelines, but should be aware of unique circumstances related to COVID-19 for youngsters.
As children may not be able to abide by social distancing, masking, etc. LSSI highly recommends that parents get tested for COVID-19 prior to the visit date with their child. Testing is free and available in most areas. Contact your LSSI caseworker for assistance locating COVID-19 testing sites. (Note that it may take time to get a test date and to receive test results, so plan accordingly.)
Additional safety rules include:
- LSSI staff will call before arriving to request that parents wash their hands. Face masks or a cloth covering must be worn the whole time.
- Wear a set of clean clothes that you did not wear to work or while running errands in the community, to reduce any possible transmission to your child while hugging or holding them.
- For infants, parents should have an additional clean cloth to place on themselves so the child's face does not come in direct contact with clothing. LSSI staff will also have a clean cloth they use while carrying the infant.
- Thoroughly wash or sanitize any toys/gifts prior to handing them to the child.
- When possible, try to have the meetings outdoors or in rooms where windows can remain open and maintain social distancing.
LSSI is following these safety guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 among staff:
- All staff not working remotely are monitored daily for symptoms of COVID-19.
- Staff are pre-screened for COVID-19.
- All staff must wear face masks or a face covering when at work (either in an office or out in the community).
- Social distancing practices are maintained in the office and with clients.
- Vehicles and shared spaces are cleaned frequently.
- Hand washing and hand sanitizing practices are enforced.
Helping keep each other safe (LSSI staff, clients, and the families of all) is a shared responsibility. Additional resources are available to help. The following links provide practical, helpful information.