March 18, 2020

Dear consumers, surrogates, and partners,

The Northeast Arc is committed to protecting the people we support and our staff. We want to let you know about the measures we are taking to protect the health and safety of all families who participate in our Personal Care Management (PCM) program regarding COVID-19.

Our commitment to you:

  • Instead of coming to your home, we will conduct visits via telephone until further notice. This includes all:
    • Annual and quarterly visits
    • Clinical re-evaluations
    • Functional skills training
    • Intake and orientation
  • For consumers applying for PCA services, we will make every attempt to conduct our initial clinical evaluation via videoconference.
    • If you are unable to participate in an evaluation via videoconference, we will refer you back to your healthcare provider for a referral to another program (such as home health).
  • Any staff person who is feeling sick will stay home. If necessary, staff will participate in a 14-day self-quarantine
  • We are here to help. If you have a question or need assistance, call your skills trainer or contact the PCM team at 978-762-0301 or [email protected]

Important steps you can take:

  • Make sure that we have your current phone number and email address.
  • Call your PCAs and make sure you have a back-up plan if a PCA or other caregiver gets sick.  If you need assistance, call us.
  • If you have a split Prior Authorization (PA) and need to use your vacation hours, do so.  Let staff know if you are running out of hours or need to extend your authorization and we will help.
  • Let us know if you need a PCA to work overtime, but you don’t have an overtime authorization in place. MassHealth has temporarily waived some overtime requirements, which your skills trainer can help explain.
  • Immediately contact your healthcare provider if you or someone in your home is feeling sick – especially if someone has a fever over 100.3 degrees or new respiratory symptoms (such as cough or shortness of breath).
  • If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911.
  • Check mass.gov/2019coronavirus every day for important information and updates about COVID-19

This is a dynamic and evolving situation and we will update you as additional information becomes available.  Thank you for your help making sure we all stay as healthy as possible.