Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update & Our Response

We’re open. Behavioral Framework remains committed to our clients, employees, and their families. We will continue to honestly and openly communicate with parents, caregivers, and employees as this situation evolves and allow you to make the decisions most appropriate for your family.

We’ve worked with many of you for years and value the trust you have in us. We understand that you and your family depend on us to deliver the essential, meaningful, and impactful therapy your children need. We don’t take this responsibility lightly and intend to continue providing these needed services. We want you to know that during these extraordinary times, we are here for you.

Precautions

Behavioral Framework has implemented a number of safety precautions to minimize the risk of infection to both our clients and our employees. We encourage you to read the letters posted below for details regarding the precautions listed below.

  • All administrative staff except our Chief Clinical Officer and CEO are working from home.
  • Providers (Clinical Supervisors, BCBAs) that can effectively deliver services remotely via telehealth are doing so.
  • Nearly all direct therapists are working one-to-one with a single client to limit exposure—a very limited number of therapists are working with two clients (at different times).
  • We have implemented a Daily Safety Checklist (below) to be followed by all clients, employees, and their families.
  • We are requiring frequent hand washing and are adding hygiene-based programming to all treatment plans.
  • We are providing all direct therapists a proactive reimbursement to purchase cleaning and hygiene supplies.

Daily Safety Checklist: In conjunction with an industry workgroup, we have developed a checklist of 5 criteria that employees, clients, and their families must use before session. If anyone answers YES to any of the questions below session must be canceled.

  1. Travel: In the past two weeks, have you or anyone in your home traveled to an area currently known to have community spread of COVID-19? (China, Europe, California, Washington State, New York)? Note: this list may change over time.
  2. Exposure: In the past two weeks, have you or anyone in your home come into contact with someone who has a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis?
  3. Fever: Take your temperature and the temperature of those in your home. Are any of them over 100°?
  4. Respiratory: Have you or anyone in your home had any symptoms of lower respiratory illness such as cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing?
  5. Other: Do you have any other reason to believe that you or anyone in your home might be at an increased risk for COVID-19?

Transparency

Our CEO started formally communicating about COVID-19 to all employees and families through a series of letters on March 11, 2020. We will continue updating this page and issuing new letters as we navigate this unprecedented event.

Timeline

March 31, 2020

As we expected and planned for, Maryland, Virginia, and DC have issued “Stay at Home” orders that direct residents to stay home except for certain essential activities. Behavioral Framework, and all other ABA therapy providers, are exempt from these orders. Behavioral Framework’s operations, which involve providing ABA therapy for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), are part of the healthcare and public health industry and all employees are considered part of an essential critical infrastructure workforce by both State and Federal regulations.

To ensure our therapists are able to safely travel to and from work, we issued “Authorized Essential Service Provider” cards to all employees last week. Your Clinical Supervisor and the entire leadership team remain available to you should you have any questions or need guidance during this event. We are here for you you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

March 26, 2020

Maryland has closed public schools through April 24, 2020. Virginia has closed public schools for the remainder of the academic year. Behavioral Framework is available and committed to supporting you during this time. Our Clinical Directors and Supervisors are proactively reaching out to all families to offer additional support and adust schedules as appropriate and feasible. We’re here should you need us, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam ordered the closure of certain non-essential businesses effective March 25. This order does not apply to Behavioral Framework. The therapy we provide is considered an essential service and is exempt from this executive order. We will continue to monitor and comply with any and all government orders.

March 23, 2020

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan issued an executive order mandating all non-essential businesses close at 5 PM. This order does not apply to Behavioral Framework. The therapy we provide is considered an essential service and is exempt from this executive order.

Our services are listed in both the State and Federal list of essential business, and this has been confirmed by the Maryland Department of Health. Behavioral Framework will continue to follow public health guidelines and our own policies to minimize the spread of the virus to the fullest extent possible.

As of now, there is no such order in Virginia. We will continue to monitor and comply with any government orders.

We are here for you. Please reach out to us with any questions.

March 20, 2020

Behavioral Framework issues proactive reimbursement to all employees working directly with clients for cleaning and hygiene products.

These are difficult times, particularly for families with children with disabilities. We will get through this together. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if we can support you in any way. Our office is still operating during normal business hours and your Clinical Supervisor is available to support you even if your services are temporarily on hold.

Regulations issued by the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) define ABA/Autism services provided to individuals with autism as medically necessary; and, as such is an essential service.

March 17, 2020

The current COVID-19 situation is changing very quickly. We are monitoring news reports and government updates several times a day as well as regularly speaking to our partners and industry peers at other providers throughout the United States. We are collectively working on strategies to maintain some level of therapy for those that need it while minimizing the risk of infection.

While this update outlines what we are doing now, we are working around the clock behind the scenes to stay abreast of the situation and make changes as appropriate.

We respect the right of parents to make decisions that are best for their families.  Clinical staff will be reaching out to families to discuss individual family needs. 

In addition to the other measures already in place, we are implementing further preventative measures as detailed in the Daily Safety Checklist.

BCBA-Rendered Services: In an effort to promote social distancing and reduce the number of people in a home at any given time, all BCBA-rendered services (assessments, supervision, parent training) will be delivered remotely until further notice.

Deferral of Copays and Deductibles: Behavioral Framework will not be invoicing for or collecting copays or deductibles until May. Invoices generated in May will be due in August. We will provide more formal guidance on this at a later date.

March 12, 2020

The State of Maryland announced plans to close all public schools from March 16 through March 27. These closures are intended to prevent large gatherings of children and adults to prevent “community spread” of the coronavirus.

While schools are closed, Behavioral Framework intends to continue providing the therapy services that you and your family rely on. We realize the impact these closures can have on your child and life and want to ensure that we are ready and available to support you and your family during this time. Over the next few weeks, we will work with families and employees to adjust schedules to accommodate changes due to the virus.

Why we’re open: As a behavioral health provider, our therapists provide medically necessary treatment for children and youth.  We will continue to monitor the situation and make decisions consistent with CDC and local health agency guidelines.

March 11, 2020

Behavioral Framework CEO sent the first Coronavirus letter to all families and employees. The letter provides general information about Coronavirus and outlines the steps we’re asking all families and employees to take to limit the spread of the virus.

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