Please read KIPDA’s statement below:
COVID-19 UPDATE ON SERVICE PROVISION
Response from the KIPDA Area Agency on Aging and Independent Living
LOUISVILLE, KY (MARCH 19, 2020) – On March 6th, 2020 Governor Andy Beshear declared a State of Emergency after the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Kentucky. After the Declaration was announced, the agency began implementing emergency plans and procedures to maintain services and protect the community members we serve in Jefferson, Bullitt, Oldham, Henry, Trimble, Spencer, and Shelby County.
COVID-19 is most harmful to older adults, especially those with compromised immune systems, diabetes, respiratory disease, heart, lung, and kidney disease. As the designated Area Agency on Aging and Independent Living (AAAIL), the Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Agency (KIPDA) serves thousands of the most vulnerable adults in the region. In addition to those programs serving older adults, service is also provided to hundreds of vulnerable younger adults and children with special needs through the Medicaid Waiver programs. It is our duty to protect and advocate not only for those we provide direct service, but for the entire community.
KIPDA has been fortunate to partner with providers and community organizations across the region to meet this unprecedented challenge and will continue these partnerships as we move forward in order to maintain services. Additionally, there has been a constant line of communication with local and state agencies to identify and address needs.
At the onset of the crisis, the KIPDA AAAIL immediately submitted a plan to the Kentucky Department of Aging and Independent Living (DAIL) outlining efforts to assure the continuation of home delivered and congregate meal service to older adults in the region. With the approval from Governor Beshear, the plan has been implemented and meals are being delivered to clients. This includes delivery to our congregate meal site participants who formerly traveled to sites each day for their meals and other services.
While Senior Centers, Multi-Purpose Centers, and Nutrition Sites have been closed to the general public, staff remain on site. KIPDA has maintained communication with providers and by working together have developed creative methods to administer supportive services. Senior Center services are still being provided to the extent possible through telephone and video conferencing methods.
KIPDA is working very closely with our In-Home Service providers in the region. Information was disseminated to educate and train staff to protect the older adults they serve as well as themselves. Services are being monitored very closely – all In-Home services such as personal care, homemaking, and chore continue uninterrupted. These services are necessary to maintain health, safety, and welfare of older adults in the community and will continue to be provided in the home while all necessary precautions are being taken to avoid contraction and spread of COVID-19. Additionally:
- Non-Emergency Transportation services are still being provided throughout the region.
- In-Home Services Case Managers and Medicaid Waiver staff are now working through telephone and video options to provide services.
- KIPDA’s In Person Assister program continues to provide individuals seeking health insurance with assistance enrolling in healthcare plans through the Kentucky Health Benefits Exchange or the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace. This includes those individuals who have recently become unemployed due to the COVID-19 crisis.
- Long-Term Care Ombudsman services are being provided throughout the region.
- The network is supporting the needs of our Caregivers and Grandparents Raising Grandchildren.
- The Aging and Disability Resource Center and our Call Center staff are fully operational and will continue to provide information and referral, intake, and updates to the community at large and to active clients.
In order to meet the needs of the community we also implemented methods internally to ensure that we follow the COVID-19 guidance for social distancing in order to continue providing services to the community during this crisis while also maintaining the health and safety of our employees. KIPDA has equipped staff to work remotely and implemented staggered schedules to reduce the number of individuals on-site at any given period for those that must come into the office. Through these methods, KIPDA is maintaining normal business hours.
KIPDA Area Agency on Aging and Independent Living and our providers are proud to be a part of #TeamKentucky and remain dedicated to serving you.
For the full statement, click here.