Prioritizing Your Mental Health During COVID-19

In these times of heightened stress with the many unknowns related to coronavirus (COVID-19), it’s more important than ever to take care of our mental health.

KVC Hospitals is creating several free, educational, and therapeutic resources to help families connect and navigate through the increased stress, isolation, and uncertainties during these times. As a national leader in behavioral and mental health treatment for youth ages 6 to 18, our mental health experts provide a wealth of knowledge to help your family overcome the many challenges COVID-19 brings. Check back every week for new blogs and videos!

Click here to learn how KVC Hospitals is protecting our clients and employees from COVID-19.

 


Become Part of Our Emergency Response Team

Our extraordinary healthcare professionals are working hard to continue providing life-saving psychiatric treatment to children and teens struggling with their mental health. In these difficult times, we’re looking for incredible people like you to become an extension of our team by donating to our emergency response efforts. Learn more and make an online donation at kvc.org/emergencyfund.


About KVC Hospitals

KVC Hospitals and KVC Niles remain open and are accepting new admissions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our team of healthcare professionals provides compassionate treatment for youth ages 6 to 18 who are experiencing depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, impacts of trauma, and other behavioral and mental health needs. To learn how your child can benefit from treatment at one of our inpatient acute hospitals or residential treatment centers, call our Admissions team at (913) 890-7468 or email hospitaladmissions@kvc.org. You can also see all of our locations at kvchospitals.org/locations.

Frequently Asked Questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19)

mental health coronavirusAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. Symptoms typically appear 2 to 14 days after exposure and common symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Click here to visit the CDC’s website for more information.

Yes, coronavirus affects people of all ages. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that most reported cases have affected older adults with pre-existing health conditions.

According to the WHO, people catch COVID-19 from others who have the virus, typically through small respiratory droplets from the nose or mouth. These droplets are spread when an infected person coughs, sneezes or breathes. Sometimes, these droplets can land on objects and surfaces like door handles, light switches, countertops, etc. If people touch these surfaces and then touch their eyes, mouth or nose, they introduce the virus to their bodies.

Below, we have listed some of the key things the CDC says you can do to prevent yourself from becoming infected. In addition to caring for your physical health, it is also incredibly important to pay extra attention to your mental health and the wellbeing of your loved ones. If you or a loved one is struggling with mental health challenges, reach out to your primary care physician or community mental health center to discuss your concerns. You can also take this free online assessment to determine if your child might need professional help.

During this uncertain time, gather your family and have open, honest conversations about any questions or concerns anyone may have about COVID-19. Check out this article for more ways you can talk to your kids about coronavirus.

coronavirus resourcesRemember to follow good hygiene practices, including:

  • Frequently wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Use a 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer if you can’t wash your hands right away.
  • Avoid touching your face, especially your nose, mouth and eyes.
  • Cough or sneeze into a disposable tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash, or use the inside of your bent elbow if you don’t have a tissue.
  • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily, such as doorknobs, light switches, sink faucets, cell phones, etc.

Public health officials also recommend practicing social distancing. Experts recommend keeping a 6-foot physical distance between yourself and other people to reduce your chances of catching COVID-19.

As the situation around COVID-19 continues to rapidly evolve, we continue to enhance our protocols and precautions for reducing risk of exposure in our treatment centers. Our leadership team is monitoring news throughout each day from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and our local and State health departments. We are quickly addressing new information and guidelines as they become available as well as minimizing disruption to the imperative services we provide for children and families.

We have implemented the following policies to keep clients and employees healthy and safe:

  • We strongly encourage family involvement throughout the treatment process but as part of our goal to keep our clients safe, we will continue to restrict visitors until further notice. We are utilizing telehealth/video capabilities and phone calls to conduct family therapy and parental/guardian visits.
  • Given the current challenges with the convergence of flu, cold, and allergy season along with concerns surrounding COVID-19, we have created a workflow to care for clients who have potential symptoms. This includes a specialized observation space to conduct the necessary medical assessments while keeping other clients and employees healthy.
  • All of our healthcare professionals are entering our treatment centers through the main entrance only and are not using a separate employee entrance. This allows us to conduct a thorough daily screening process with each employee, using guidelines from the CDC and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). This screening includes temperature checks.
  • We are screening our clients daily using guidelines from the CDC and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). This screening includes temperature checks twice a day.
  • New potential clients are undergoing a screening process prior to admission to check for symptoms, fever, and self-reported history of recent travel or interactions with people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • Our housekeeping department is using disinfectants approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and recommended by the CDC for sanitization of the Coronavirus family.
  • For children receiving treatment in our psychiatric residential treatment facilities (PRTFs), we will continue to cancel our community outings and weekend passes until further notice to reduce the risk of exposure.
  • We have asked all vendors to leave deliveries outside and to alert us when a delivery has been completed. If a vendor must bring a delivery inside, they are undergoing the same screening process as our employees. For contractors who must complete work onsite, they are also undergoing our employee screening process.
  • We will continue to provide extensive education to our employees and clients about COVID-19 and healthy hygiene habits that prevent spreading.
  • We will continue to cancel volunteer activities, tours, and other activities that create opportunities for exposure to COVID-19 in our treatment centers.

We will keep you apprised as we have new information at KVC Hospitals. If you have any questions about our policies and protocols, please contact us at hospitals@kvc.org.