We are committed to providing a safe and healthy environment as a foremost priority. We are all responsible for implementing this plan. The collective goal is to mitigate the potential for transmission of COVID-19 and other illnesses in our workplace, and that requires full cooperation among our clinicians and clients. Only through a collaborative effort can we generate the best opportunity for safety and wellness.
Studies show that even the common cold can negatively impact cognitive functioning. We want to get a sense of true functioning, under typical conditions. We work in very close proximity to testing participants and share materials. Out of respect for our health and those for whom we are responsible, we follow CDC guidelines with fidelity and take extra precaution. This means that you should not come to our office if you:
* have had a fever in the last 2-3 days. CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical
care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
* have been ill with vomiting or diarrhea in the last 3 days. Norovirus is highly contagious and remains so even after you're feeling better. Infected people are contagious when they have symptoms but also spread it a few days before and after they have symptoms.
* are actively coughing or sneezing
* need to take medication to be okay
* believe you were exposed to Covid-19, flu, or other highly-transmissible illness
We will not test anyone who is symptomatic--but we will prioritize a rescheduled appointment, so please be in touch!
Scheduling an assessment
Its tremendous success in practice has culminated in our decision to maintain availability of virtual work for the foreseeable future. However, we're so happy to be back in the swing of meeting in-person! All testing sessions are conducted with thoughtful planning to optimize experience and results. We ask that you contact us early to develop assessment plans that promote comfort, efficiency, and safety. A few things to avoid: scheduling testing to coincide with a major life change (i.e., first day of school, birth of a sibling, start of a new job); scheduling testing for a time when you might be unusually tired (i.e., after a long flight, when returning from travel to a different time zone, the morning after halloween/late event); scheduling testing right after a medical procedure/vaccination.
Safety measures within WPA offices
We operate independently under the guidance of the DC Department of Health for healthcare facilities. As such, we are all fully vaccinated, participated in COVID-related continuing education, and maintain PPE use and other safety precautions. Please note that every provider has her own medical profile, risk tolerance, family considerations, and other factors. There is no singular office safety policy such that each provider can independently determine under what conditions she is best able to provide services. That said, consideration, communication, and caution remain core expectations.
No assessment work should occur when either party is sick, suspects they may be sick, or is unsure of health status. If either clinician or client has any concerns at all about health, they are expected to stay home and we will prioritize rescheduling. If either clinician or client is aware of exposure to someone with COVID-19, flu, norovirus, etc., staying home or masking is appreciated. Anyone who has symptoms or is awaiting COVID test results is expected to remain home. An appointment can be made via telehealth or rescheduled once 5 days has elapsed if no symptoms emerge or a negative COVID-19 test is rendered after sufficient wait time (optimally 5 days post potential exposure). In cases of uncertainty, we ask that you please mask.
Appropriately fitted masks or respirators may be required in suite 635 depending on individual circumstances. We encourage visitors to have a mask on hand just in case. Decisions about the masking requirement may be made solely at the discretion of the provider in tandem with the client/client's family. At peak illness times (Covid surges, winter months, following travel, etc.), greater precautions may be required.
We will maintain space as best as possible in the assessment interaction, but all clients should know that there are commonly intervals of closer contact (i.e., to retrieve/switch materials). Because we work so closely together, it is especially important for participants to be healthy.
hand washing & sanitizing
Our bathroom is shared and steps have been taken to make its use safer. Visitors are encouraged to wash hands with soap and water upon arrival to the building. Hand-sanitizer is plentiful in our suite.
cleaning, disinfection & ventilation
Regular housekeeping practices have been amplified, including routine cleaning and disinfecting of work surfaces, equipment, and shared spaces such as restrooms and lobby areas. Frequent cleaning and disinfecting will be conducted by clinicians in high-touch areas such door handles, computers, testing materials, etc. Testing participants will have ongoing access to sanitizer. We continue to utilize high quality Germ Guardian True HEPA filters, Homedics, adn Airthereal air purifiers. The building team has also made adjustments such that the maximum amount of fresh air is being brought into the workplace, air re-circulation is being limited, and ventilation systems are closely monitored.
All of our providers have met expectations set by Mayor Muriel Bowser and DC Health that all health care workers in the District of Columbia should be fully vaccinated.
In some scenarios, testing participants may be asked to obtain COVID testing prior to the office visit. This decision is made by the evaluator in alignment with an office-wide policy of greater vigilance when community spread is high, seasonal risks are present, and/or there are other personal/medical extenuating circumstances.
Communicate. It might be hard, but we ask that anyone who later finds out that they were in close proximity to someone with COVID-19 or perhaps becomes symptomatic or tests positive themselves, let us know. There’s no blame or shame. There is risk of preventable harm if you do not disclose. We will be transparent in the office, and ask the same of our clients.
We remain in regular contact with leaders in the assessment field, test publishers, and colleagues to make decisions about best testing practices.
The variety of options we offer are guided by client best interest, research data, and safety first. If you have any questions at all, please ask! Talking and planning together is key.