SRVS Adjusts Services Delivery Amid Pandemic
MEMPHIS, Tenn., March 31, 2020 – With the COVID-19 virus spreading nationwide and a “Safer at Home” executive order in force, SRVS has adjusted its services delivery to continue safe, efficient and effective care to the more than 1800 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities supported by the agency.
“SRVS operates several programs that include children’s services that offer preschool and pediatric therapy, 24/7 staffing of more than 50 supported living homes, and an employment program where we place individuals in jobs around the city,” said Tyler Hampton, SRVS executive director. “We made immediate adjustments to our programs and monitor them for any other further changes that might be needed.”
SRVS Kids & Families therapists are hosting video telehealth sessions for pediatric therapies and early intervention services. SRVS Play Do Learn preschool staff are developing “virtual preschool” options where teachers can meet with children and their families.
The children’s program also launched a YouTube channel where videos from therapists and teachers will be posted weekly. “Therapy Tips Thursdays” videos also will be posted on the program’s Facebook and Instagram pages.
“We’ve limited staff coming to our headquarters’ building to essential personnel only,” Hampton said. He said one critical function of the small group is to continue dispensing medications, which would ordinarily see a steady flow of staff people with the people they support coming daily from residential locations into the main office.
“The Intermediate Care Facilities (ICF) program, for example, is offering curbside medication pickup, which helps limit the amount of social contact between parties,” said Patsy Wilson, Director of SRVS Health Services. “SRVS staff can now pick up medications for the people they support at the front door of the building by calling ahead.”
Helping secure jobs for people supported by SRVS is one of the agency’s major focus areas. While many businesses have curtailed hours during the pandemic, SRVS’ Employment Services department is working closely with area retailers and have multiple job opportunities identified.
“It’s an unprecedented time, with healthcare workers at the forefront of protecting lives,” Hampton said. “SRVS employees are going above-and-beyond, including our frontline Direct Support Professionals, who during ordinary times never cease to amaze with the professionalism and compassion they bring to helping people thrive.”
SRVS (pronounced serves), is the state’s largest Tennessee-based provider of services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, providing employment, residential, community-based and children’s services to 1,800 individuals. Founded in 1962, SRVS is a United Way of the Mid-South agency and the “Family Answer for Disabilities.”