The MENTOR Network encourages all state, county and local governments to consider the following recommendations during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure the health and welfare of individuals we support. We appreciate the actions that many have already taken and look forward to opportunities to partner together with all stakeholders.
Immediately increase rates to ensure providers are able to cover increased cost associated with COVID-19.
- Overtime, sick leave, and additional resources.
- PPE, increased cleaning supplies and other materials.
Greater flexibility with staffing.
- Increase staffing ratios.
- Explicitly state that employees of HCBS and LTSS providers are essential healthcare personnel.
- Facilitate childcare for essential healthcare and human services workers.
- Allow providers to reassign employees from temporarily closed programs to ongoing services.
Help us hire more workers.
- Streamline employee hiring processes to permit new hires to deliver services quicker, including on the job training.
- Encourage job-seekers to apply to health and human services positions.
Greater flexibility for home- and community-based services (HCBS).
- Reconsider settings for delivery of care (e.g. increase capacity of group homes).
- Permit providers to alter services to comply with CDC (e.g. reimburse home meal delivery for individuals who relied on a day program for food).
Expand use of Tele-Visits.
- Approve the use of telephone, video calls, and other technology at current rates as a means of electronic visits.
- State-to-state reciprocal licensing treatment to permit televisits/telehealth without the practitioner having to be licensed in every state separately