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1913 W. Townline Rd. Peoria, IL 61615

309.691.3800

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Updates

These updates are geared toward the general public. If you are a family member or guardian please see the more extensive updates on the Advocacy Portal. 

 

EP!C To Close CDS Temporarily

As of 5-27-2022 The Peoria Public Health Department has announced an increase in cases at an alarming rate (over 36,000 across 15 counties). EP!C has seen a few cases in staff and individuals and while not considered an outbreak we have made the decision to close Townline to CDS services from Monday, May 31 – Monday, June 20 and will require masking for anyone in the building regardless of vaccination status. 

We did not make this decision lightly as we were just making masking adjustments and had high hopes for diminished cases. However, we want to ensure all people supported, providers, and team members stay safe and healthy. This is just a precautionary step to prevent any future spread of COVID-19 at EP!C.

Staff will continue to follow protocols including monitoring symptoms, testing at credible sources, and reporting back to HR. 

Follow this story at PCHD

EP!C will continue to follow all Local, State, and CDC mandates.


New Mask Requirements

As of 5-10-2022 EP!C is able to adjust our masking requirements. We’ve seen a plateau of cases with the State mandate lifted and are hopeful that this is the last time we have to implement masking for everyone. Our current masking and COVID-19 policy is as follows: 

  • All vaccinated employees will no longer need to wear masks.
  • Unvaccinated employees will still need to wear a mask during working hours until further notice.
  • Unvaccinated employees will no longer need to complete a weekly covid-19 test.
  • We will no longer require taking temperatures or screening process for anyone at the beginning of each shift.

All employees experiencing any symptoms still need to notify their supervisors and follow the COVID-19 protocol.

EP!C will continue to follow all Local, State, and CDC mandates.


New Hiring Policy

For the continual safety of the people we support and fellow staff, as of April 1, 2022, EP!C will require all new hires to be vaccinated. 

  • Any new hires must be vaccinated or in the process of receiving and planning on a second dose.
  • Any “veteran” employees who are not vaccinated must get tested weekly or complete the vaccination process. *See HR for details.
  • We will still follow all infection control procedures until further notice including completing Health Inquiry screenings. 

EP!C will continue to follow all Local, State, and CDC mandates.


New Mask Requirements

EP!C is considered a congregated facility much like a correctional facility or nursing home. That being said all people entering our Townline facility must continue to wear masks during working hours. We are hopeful that this is short-term until the governor moves our state entirely into phase five.

  • Employees do not need to wear a mask in their own office unless someone enters your office and you’re not vaccinated.
  • You will not be required to wear a mask if you are in a meeting or training room unless you are not vaccinated.
  • All people using the cafeteria must wear a mask until they are seated to eat.
  • Community Living Services (Group Homes) and Community Options (Host Homes) employees and individuals off-site do not have to wear masks if fully vaccinated.
  • We will still follow all infection control procedures until further notice including completing Health Inquiry screenings. 

EP!C will continue to follow all Local, State, and CDC mandates.


Welcome Back, Again

We are happy to announce that on March 8th we will return to providing in-house Community Day Services at our Townline facility.
This limited opening will once again start with individuals in our residential programs who have received both doses of the vaccine. Our program areas will look a little different to assist with safety precautions, but we are excited to have people return to their regular routines.

We request copies of everyone’s COVID Vaccination Cards or written communication if you chose not to receive the vaccination.
If you want to attend and have not heard from EP!C, please contact Crystal Spencer.


An EP!C Partnership

There is a wide scope of perceived risk regarding the COVID vaccine. With doses becoming available the question of “when should people with disabilities be allowed to receive it” comes into question.
The Peoria County Health Department has been in constant contact with us during the pandemic. From guidance to updates to now securing doses of the vaccine for our staff and people we support. Where we are seeing people with disabilities on lower priority lists or not in plans at all in other states, it’s a testament to the value our community sees in the people we support. 
 
The Health Department and Advanced Medical Transport were at EP!C’s headquarters to administer the vaccine to participants in our residential program who have opted to receive the vaccine. The second dose will come on February 19th. 
 
Individuals who live at home are encouraged to contact the health department when additional doses become available.
 

Welcome Back, Our New Normal

Over the past several months we have worked to get our Townline facility ready for the return of Day Service Programming. That means lots of changes in protocols, transportation, and how the building is utilized. This video gives a glimpse of new guidelines and directions people will need to follow.

Our staff has been working with individuals to get them familiar with the “new normal”. We are so excited to have you back with us and look forward to the day when we can all be back together.

To see the changes and know exactly what to do when your loved one comes back to EP!C’s Townline facility watch our directional video here


IDHS to allow our Townline facility to open to a limited number of individuals.

After push back from parents, guardians, and agencies like ours, IDHS has come back with an allowance of a soft opening of day services programs for the state on August 3rd. We have received IDHS guidelines and our working groups have put together and submitted our COVID-19 preparedness plan to them. 

As we approach Monday, August 3rd, only a limited number of residents from EP!C’s Community Homes are targeted to attend day services at this time.

During the first two weeks, we will monitor the effectiveness of the new health and safety systems we have put in place and make adjustments as needed as we prepare to provide a healthy and safe place for people to come.

In the coming weeks, we will be contacting all the families/guardians to discuss the details of who and when people who live at home or with other agencies may return to Day Services at EP!C’s Townline Facility. Everyone will be assessed using the IDHS Preparedness Tool to determine their eligibility to come back to Day Services. EP!C’s Day Services Instructors will be calling to review your loved ones’ overall health status and risks, along with their ability or willingness to wear a mask and practice other safety precautions. If they are not eligible at this time, EP!C will let families know what virtual educational opportunities we can provide, and links to participate will be sent out.

We understand this is frustrating to those who are not able to begin services on August 3rd. We ask for your continued patience and thank you for your continued support during this time.

Preparedness Assessment Security Update


Townline facility closure extended until August 31st.

We are disappointed to announce that IDHS has pushed back Day Service Programs across the state once again. Our Townline facility must remain closed until August 31st. This extended closer comes despite our two working groups who have dedicated time to creating a safe environment including coordinating possible schedules, social distancing directional signage, and acquiring additional PPE. We are continuing to find creative alternative ways to provide our programming opportunities for our residents, and many of our friends who live at home and with other provider agencies.


Townline facility must close until June 30th.

IDHS sent a memo stating Day Service Programs across the state must remain closed until June 30th. This is disappointing news for our residents, staff, and many of our friends who live at home and with other provider agencies. We will continue to use this time to prepare for the day we can reopen along with expanding the virtual programming opportunities we are developing to offer remotely. 


 In light of the recent articles published in our local news websites…

We want to ensure you our staff is doing everything in our power and taking every precaution to ensure the safety of our staff and the people we support.
The cases that we have had to deal with have been very mild and all but one have recovered.

Click here to read our full statement.


Shelter-In-Place extended – Townline facility must close until May 31st.

Governor Pritzker has extended the Shelter in Place order through the end of May. EP!C is extending our restrictions and closures to restrict entrance to our offices and group homes to staff only and will continue to follow strict protocols to ensure the safety of our individuals, our staff and the community as a whole. We thank you for staying home, so we can all stay safe. We will get through this together.


Shelter-In-Place extended – Townline facility must close until May 4th.

Due to Governor Pritzker extending the Shelter in Place order through Thursday, April 30th, EP!C is extending our restrictions and closures beyond April 15th. EP!C will continue to restrict entrance to our group homes to anyone other than EP!C staff until Friday, May 1st. Townline and Day Services will remain closed until Monday, May 4th. We hope everyone in our community and state honors the Shelter in Place Order, so we are not looking at another extension.


The Illinois Department of Human Services has stated that our Townline facility must close until April 15th.

The building will only be accessible to assigned Townline staff. Visitors at our other sites are also asked to be restricted if possible. If visitors have to attend they will be asked health questions upon arrival. All individuals living in an EP!C Group Home or Host Home or other Supported Living will need to stay home until at least April 15th. Together we will get through these challenges. We continually look to provide safe and healthy environments for our staff, our community and ultimately the people we support. Thank you for your continued cooperation and understanding.

 

                                                   Heart Hunters

Have you seen the trend of putting hearts in your window so people walking or driving have something beautiful to look at and lift their spirits? Heart Hunters is a global movement and the residents of EP!C’s 16 group homes have had a lot of fun getting creative and participating with our own hearts.

If you see them make sure you wave because someone is probably watching out the window. 

You can decorate your own EP!C hearts here!  Large HeartSmall Hearts

#StayHome #StaySafe #BeEPIC #70YearsofEPIC