Updates Regarding Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
What we’re doing to keep everyone safe.
The situation regarding COVID-19 is changing by the hour. Keeping the Ashley community informed for its health and safety is of the utmost importance to us. We will update this page as new information becomes available.
Updated January 6, 2021
Welcome to Ashley!
We are committed to ensuring the health and safety of our patients and staff. We have a team dedicated to identifying and implementing best practices and recommendations from the CDC, State of Maryland, and the Harford County Health Department.
Please review the packet below for the most up to date information regarding our current safety guidelines and initial stay in the Stabilization Unit.
On April 13, 2020, Ashley implemented a Stabilization Unit for all patients upon admission or re-admission to Ashley’s main campus in an effort to mitigate the risk to our patient community. For more information on this new program, click here.
We are relying on agencies like Center for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), Harford County Health Department, and nearby medical systems, to help us tailor our response.
Civic duty – patients continue to need treatment for substance use disorder, and the need is growing. We want to reduce the burden on the health care system, we want people, who we can safely treat, to rely on us, so as to preserve hospital beds, supplies, etc. for the COVID-19 specific response.
Organizational Benefit – we want to continue our mission to transform and save lives.
Pre-COVID-19, Ashley employed an Infection Prevention Specialist, Dir. Of Corporate Compliance, Quality & Risk Management, a Safety & Security Officer, and ample Medical & Nursing staff, all of whom possess very relevant knowledge bases and skill-sets, which position us well to navigate this health crisis.
The past few flu seasons have been rather challenging, so it was very advantageous for us to adjust our existing influenza protocols in response to COVID-19.
Our environmental care staff is well-trained in infection-control, prevention practices, as well as disinfection routines.
We suspended Visitation and Family Wellness Program (FWP) until further notice. Family services are now available virtually.
Out of an abundance of caution, we now test patients weekly and strongly encourage our staff to participate in voluntary testing.
We advised managers to monitor the health of our workforce and asked employees to be mindful of their own health and stay in place, as needed. We moved all non-essential staff members to work remotely. In addition, we are screening all employees for symptoms including fever when they arrive to the facility.
COVID-19 risk factors which require case by case approval (in addition to symptom screening)
- Over 65 years of age
- Having a respiratory illness
- Having a major medical co-morbidity
- Any travel by plane, train, or ship in past 14 days
- Lacking an actionable discharge plan meaning not having the ability to safely and quickly discharge to their home should they develop any symptoms (*an actionable discharge plan is a prerequisite for admission to our inpatient program)
We are reviewing these guidelines regularly and updating as appropriate. Any change in the rate of admissions is dependent on our staff and environmental readiness and is dictated by our Medical providers.
Key Takeaways Regarding Ashley’s Preparedness & Response
We take the health and safety of our patients, families, and staff very seriously. At this time, both are our primary considerations.
The situation is rapidly evolving and we are relying on our recently appointed Incident Command Center, which is a team of COVID-19 dedicated staff, to track guidelines issued by CDC and our county health department.
Ashley was well-prepared for this crisis based on our staffing and existing flu protocol.
To mitigate risk and/or potential spread, we’ve:
1) Implemented strict screening guidelines for incoming patients
2) Developed detailed algorithms to shape our response and campus readiness
3) Reduced census by approximately 30% to relieve the strain on staff & support social distancing measures.
What is the threat level to you or your loved one?
We can’t say that our environment poses no threat but we can confidently say that Ashley is taking any and all steps to ensure a safe environment for our patients and staff.
Ashley is operating as a health care provider would, meaning we are reaching for the highest possible standard in terms of environmental response and overall safety.
Specific to our Outpatient Locations – Effective March 30th, we began offering telehealth PHP, IOP, OP, and medical services. We are screening all patients upon arrival to the clinic and enforcing mandatory masking. We continue to offer in-person lab services and detoxification services. Limited therapeutic services are available live (following social distancing guidelines) or as an on-site telehealth service.
For the full informational deck on our preparedness, click here.
For the safety of staff, patients, and their families, all visitation is suspended until further notice. This includes:
- Patient visitation
- In-Person Participation in the Family Wellness Program (Family Services are now occurring virtually)
- Participation in the Children and Youth Program
- External 12-Step speakers
- External Sunday chapel attendance
In addition, we’ve canceled any in-person alumni and family activities until further notice. For events occurring on- or off-campus, we will update our community when we have more information. Alumni Chapter Meetings and Parent and Family Connection meetings will now be conducted virtually.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Dr. Greg Hobelmann, MD, MPH, Senior Vice President, Chief Medical and Clinical Officer, or Alex Denstman, MBA, Senior Vice President, Chief Growth Officer.
What You Should Know about COVID-19
Get answers to frequently asked questions regarding COVID-19. Get information on staying safe, about common symptoms, and the number of cases in your area.
Recovery and Community Resources
Learn how you can continue to work toward recovery despite social distancing and connect with other resources to keep you and your loved ones healthy.