All KCCAT Services Move to Telehealth Effective Immediately
In an abundance of caution and consideration for patients, staff, and the community, we have made the decision to suspend in-person services at KCCAT, with a transition to telehealth effective immediately until further notice. Please see KCCAT Service Adjustments, below.
29 April 2020
Dear KCCAT Patients,
KCCAT leadership has continued to monitor the available data related to COVID-19. With Kansas and Missouri’s formal stay-at-home orders set to expire, we wanted to provide an update regarding our decision process for resuming in-person services.
Our specialty facility was fortunate to be a setting already equipped for and experienced in providing telehealth pre-pandemic, drawing from an abundance of existing research supporting equivalent benefits for online and in-person therapies when provided by qualified clinicians. This allowed for a smoother transition to entirely online services and prevented delays or disruption in our scheduled patient care. A big thank you to all of our current patients and their families for weathering these adjustments, and embracing what we know was a new appointment format for many!
You may recall that our original decision to transition online was made relatively early in the community’s process, on March 15, as a voluntary preventative measure for helping slow transmission. As the public health data continues to evolve, stepped approaches to opening public settings and businesses are being considered. In line with our original decision—that the entirety of KCCAT’s services can be offered effectively and safely via telehealth—we strongly believe that it continues to be in the best interest of our patients, employees, and wider community for our company to remain working from home during this earliest period of re-openings. We will continue to regularly review data and guidance from national and local resources to inform when, and how, we will safely resume in-office services.
In the interim, our full array of behavioral health services for all ages (2 to 100+) continue: evidence-based assessments, outpatient, and individual intensive-outpatient psychotherapy targeted to anxiety, OCD, depression/mood, trauma, and related disorders; a variety of ongoing support and relapse-prevention groups; and short term consultation services for individuals, parents, family members, or professionals.
We also know many find themselves experiencing a number of new or recurring stress concerns at this time, or may simply have questions about our services or the use of telehealth. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions, or to let us know other ways that we may be of assistance during this period.
Part of KCCAT’s origin and mission lies in responding to the evolving needs of patients and the community, and we are always working towards improved ways of supporting you. Geared to needs of this unprecedented period, we are excited to announce these upcoming opportunities:
Finally, know that anyone is able to make use of our ongoing no-cost resource request option, regardless of where they live or interest in enrolling in KCCAT services. Simply make note of what you may be struggling with or looking for in our online screening form, and our team will review and connect you to educational information, self-help resources, or noting possibly appropriate referral options.
As has always been the case over our program’s 15 years, we remain humbled by and appreciative of those entrusting KCCAT as part of their healthcare. We have been so inspired by people's resilience and strength during this time of heightened concern and stress, and we pledge to remain available and responsive to your needs as we all move forward together.
In an abundance of caution and consideration for patients, staff, and the community, we have made the decision to suspend in-person services at KCCAT, with a transition to telehealth effective immediately until further notice. While we are not aware of known illness or direct exposure at this time for anyone connected to KCCAT, this decision is a preventative measure for helping slow the spread of COVID-19. From reviewing the latest available information, we believe that flattening the curve of community transmission is simply the right thing to do. Despite the uncertainty, inconveniences, and adjustments that come with conservative social distancing, the scientific facts support it as the most impactful response for reducing morbidity and deaths. Our goals are to adjust for a continuation of center services as seamlessly as possible, while doing our part to protect the most vulnerable individuals and resources of our healthcare systems. Additionally, we hope this step can further reduce the burden of individuals who become ill, and families facing school and daycare closings.
We are still accepting and enrolling new patients during this time, in addition to continuing care plans for our active patients. If interested in KCCAT services, please review our website then complete the online New Patient/Resource Request screening form, or call (913) 649-8820 and select option 1 from the menu.
KCCAT staff are committed to making appropriate and thoughtful adjustments to treatments for meeting the needs of this time. Do not hesitate to reach out to our center if you have questions, or for extra support or assistance locating behavioral health services. We will be continuing to update our website with information and resource links that we think could be beneficial in supporting our patients and the community, and invite you to review it regularly.
We are so thankful to be part of the wonderful Kansas City metro. Let’s all stay mindful to act with compassion and patience as we navigate this together.
"Don't think about changing your behaviour so you won't get it, think about changing your behaviour so you don't give it to somebody else." — Graham Medley, Professor of Infectious Disease Modeling, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
KCCAT is cleaned by a janitorial service daily as part of our normal course of business. Additionally, applicable therapy materials (e.g., toys in our Parent Child Interaction Therapy rooms) are routinely cleaned and disinfected using products that meet guidelines from the CDC. We are increasing the frequency and extent of our cleaning procedures during this time, as well as adding the availability of hand sanitizer in certain areas of the office and posting hand washing instructions in the restrooms. We are also ensuring our employees have the information they need to stay healthy, or to take days off and receive care from their physician when not feeling well.
Another way that we are prepared for these circumstances, that you may or may not already be aware of, is that KCCAT is equipped with a HIPAA-compliant telehealth system. Online sessions may be appropriate for many therapy activities and circumstances, and help reduce potential for treatment interruption or slowed momentum. As with all of our out of office sessions, online therapy is provided at our usual fee rates and incur no additional costs. Please contact your assigned lead clinician about your individual needs and fit for online services.
While not exhaustive, we have created a resource list of verifiable information from credible sources (PDF document). We are mindful of the potential challenge and need to balance a proactive use of news and information, and risk of “overload” and anxiety symptom triggers. Please talk with your therapist if current events are particularly impacting your functioning and would benefit from being incorporated as part of your session focus.