Oct. 15 – Kinark is gradually re-opening in-person services and continuing to provide virtual services during the COVID-19 pandemic
Kinark is re-opening its offices to deliver in-person services in a careful and gradual process. The safety and wellbeing of clients, staff and the community remain a top priority. Kinark follows the advice and guidelines provided by Public Health Ontario, by the provincial Ministry of Health and by Health Canada. Additionally, we are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation in the various communities we serve and adjusting service delivery as needed.
Kinark is excited about all the services and supports we can now provide virtually. These virtual services remain in place as we gradually resume in-person services.
Some of our clients are best served, and prefer to receive their services, in-person. Our careful and planful approach to re-opening in-person services at Kinark sites has positioned us to meet the needs of our clients and their families while also meeting all Public Health requirements for infection prevention and control.
Kinark’s Infection, Prevention and Control Measures:
In our approach to resume in-person services, our priority is to create an environment conducive for therapeutic relationships as well as one that decreases risk of exposure or transmission of COVID-19. We are doing this through several mechanisms.
Screening, Monitoring and Tracking
- Kinark staff, clients, their families/guardians, and visitors will be asked to self-screen for symptoms of COVID-19 before attending any appointment at a Kinark site and you will be required to complete a COVID-19 screening tool at your point of entry. You will be asked to provide contact information so that you could be contacted should an exposure to COVID-19 have occurred.
- Anyone who indicates they have symptoms or have travelled outside of Canada or been exposed to COVID-19 within the last 14 days will not be allowed to enter a Kinark office and will be directed to seek COVID-19 testing.
- Clients/caregivers are required to confirm they have received a negative test before entering a Kinark site if they initially triggered the assessment tool (symptoms, travel and/or exposure).
- To further reduce risk to clients, families, and visitors, any Kinark staff exhibiting symptoms, or who have travelled outside of Canada, or been exposed to COVID-19, are required to self-isolate at home until a negative COVID-19 test result has been provided.
Handwashing/Cleaning and Disinfecting surfaces
- All persons who enter a Kinark location will be asked to disinfect their hands with available hand sanitizers. All products used by Kinark meet Health Canada guidelines.
- All high touch surfaces are disinfected regularly, and any equipment or surfaces used during appointments are disinfected before and after each appointment.
- Rooms, high touch surfaces and the Kinark office sites are thoroughly cleaned each day.
Face masks, face shields and other barriers
- All persons who enter a Kinark facility/office will be asked to wear a mask. Masks will be worn during all assessment and treatment meetings.
- Children eight (8) years of age and older, and all adults, will be required to wear a mask, all others will be encouraged to do so.
- Staff will be wearing surgical masks, and some will be wearing face shields.
- Arrows on floors or walls provide direction through corridors to decrease interactions with others.
Appointments/bookings and entering the premises
- You will receive self-assessment information when your appointment is booked as well as information on what to do when you arrive at the Kinark location.
- Most locations will require you to call in when you arrive so you can be escorted directly to your appointment space.
These practices and procedures are based on current evidence and advice from public health (https://www.publichealthontario.ca/) and infection control experts. We continue to learn more about COVID-19, and will review these practices as new information becomes available.
If you have concerns about risks, any of the infection prevention and control procedures Kinark has put in place, or would like to discuss other options for receiving service, please contact your Kinark worker.
Syl Apps Youth Centre and Live-In Treatment Sites
Kinark’s Live-In Treatment and Syl Apps Youth Centre services are by definition in-person and are being delivered using enhanced health and safety/infection prevention and control measures.
These sites include:
- Syl Apps Youth Centre
- Vanier Residential Program
- Gorham Residential Program
- Lansdowne Residential Program
- Grove Residential Program
At this time, clients at Syl Apps Youth Centre are only able to visit with their families virtually. Kinark is exploring other possible visiting options aligned with accepted infection prevention and control guidelines.
Clients at our Live-in Treatment locations are able to have visits with their family members subject to a number of infection prevention and control measures.
Central Intake remains open
Central Intake remains open from 9 am to 5 pm for inquiries and new referrals for service
Sites closed to the public
- The Kinark Outdoor Centre (KOC)
Sites open by appointment only
- All Kinark office sites
It can be very difficult to feel like you are staying up to date about COVID-19 when information is changing so quickly. We recommend that you visit The Public Health Agency of Canada’s website for up to date information you can trust.