Washing Hands

Coronavirus Response

  • Last updated July 28th

    A message from The Emily Program

    Clients, Families and Friends,

    We are continually monitoring the escalating situation with coronavirus and its spread. We know this crisis creates many anxieties and concerns. The Emily Program is committed to supporting clients, families, and staff as the situation evolves.

    The Emily Program's top priority is the safety of our clients and staff. We have implemented and are continually updating policies and processes to ensure that our sites and programs continue to create a safe care and work environment.

    We have embraced telehealth and moved our OP, IOP, and PHP/IDP programs to telehealth delivery, preserving the integrity of our clinical care while allowing us to serve clients from their homes for these levels of care. Our residential programs remain open to serve clients needing that level of care. We continue to take stringent precautions around screening and enhanced preventative behaviors at our residential treatment sites. When residential clients are ready, they can step down into telehealth-based intensive services at home or in our lodging programs close to the residential site.

    Our task force of medical, clinical, and executive leadership meets daily, and as needed during each day, to ensure safety, update plans, institute new procedures, answer questions and keep all staff, clients and families informed. These efforts are working to ensure our teams can access the latest information and act quickly. We continue to take stringent precautions around screening clients entering treatment, enhanced preventative behaviors, and are ensuring we are informed regarding appropriate community resources.

    Lastly, we are heartened by and so appreciative of the community support we’ve received in support of our continued delivery of care. From families sewing and donating hundreds of cloth masks for use by staff to help keep them protected while they are out in the community getting groceries to distilleries donating gallons of their newest product – hand sanitizer – to make sure we have an adequate supply, we know that the work we do is wholeheartedly supported by the communities we are honored to serve.

    We will continue to ensure that we have the safest environment possible for all.


    Dave Willcutts headshot

    Dave Willcutts,
    Chief Executive Officer

    Mark Warren headshot

    Mark Warren,
    Chief Medical Officer


    Medical leadership staff will be available to address any questions or concerns you may have:

    Pacific Northwest: Kathleen Fugere, ARNP-BC Kathleen.Fugere@emilyprogram.com

    Midwest: Mary Bretzman, M.D., Mary.Bretzman@emilyprogram.com

    East: Mark Warren, M.D., Mark.Warren@emilyprogram.com

  • The Emily Program is committed to keeping clients and staff safe, keeping our sites open and continuing to provide essential and exceptional care to clients struggling with eating disorders.

    We have established a COVID-19 Task Force which includes executive leadership, clinical, medical and operational staff. The task force meets multiple times each day to monitor frequently fluctuating recommendations from the Center for Disease Control, World Health Organization and other resources to ensure our policies and procedures meet the latest guidelines to limit exposure to the virus. Our goal is to implement the most clinically-appropriate plans to detect, protect and respond should anyone in our care show symptoms of this virus.

    To date, The Emily Program has taken the following steps to ensure the health and safety of our clients and staff:

    • Clients, visitors and staff are screened for exposure to the disease before they are allowed to enter our sites
    • Clients and staff are screened at least once each day to monitor for symptoms of illness, e.g. fever
    • All staff with prolonged, direct client contact are required to wear medical (flat) masks. Cloth face masks are required for everyone entering our facilities. Clients are asked to bring a cloth mask from home (if they don't have a mask, we will supply one). Residential clients must wear a mask for the first 14 days after admission (thereafter, they may wear one if desired). Masks are not required during eating, sleeping, showering, when social distancing is possible, or if removing mask is therapeutically necessary.
    • Strict protocols have been established to respond to clients or staff who exhibit symptoms of COVID-19
    • Hand hygiene products are easily accessible throughout our sites
    • Instruction and signage directed at clients and staff related to proper handwashing; covering coughs and sneezes; avoiding touching nose, eyes and mouth, etc.
    • Intensive and frequent cleaning and disinfecting of objects and surfaces
    • Restricting or reducing the number of visitors who enter our sites. Currently, no visitors will be allowed into residential treatment sites with the exception residential facilities that serve adolescents. Loved ones of adults can be present during the admission process (if they are screened) but they will not be allowed into the care setting.

    • Signs are posted at all entrances that ask clients, staff, visitors, and others not to enter if they have signs of illness (such as fever or cough).
    • All clients, staff, and visitors are screened for potential illness.
    • Following guidance from local, state, and federal health agencies regarding screening and follow up
  • Telehealth services have been expanded to include intensive outpatient and day programs (IOP and PDP/IDP) to reduce traffic in and out of our sites and prevent the spread of infection. Visit our telehealth page for more information on services.

  • Employees are advised not to travel domestically or internationally at this time, unless necessary. If travel is necessary, we recommend employees be diligent, exercise caution, take preventive actions (e.g. washing hands, not touching your face, sneeze into elbow, etc.), and seek out guidance from the CDC.

  • Our residential sites are restricting visitors at this time. We are supporting virtual visits to continue to support clients and families through these exceptional times.

    The Emily Program is closely monitoring developments related to the progression of COVID-19. This policy is subject to change based on the latest recommendations from the CDC, World Health Organization and state departments of health.

  • If I have a fever and cough should I still come to treatment at The Emily Program?
    No, we are screening clients and these symptoms would indicate you should be home and resting until you are fever-free for 72 hours and no longer have a cough.

    Will I be asked to wear a mask if I attend treatment in-person?
    Yes, in line with recommendations from the CDC and State Departments of Health, everyone entering our facilities must wear a face mask. We ask that you bring a cloth mask from home to wear in our outpatient facilities or for your first 14 days of residential treatment (you can choose whether to wear one after that). A washable cloth mask will be supplied if you don't have one. Masks will not be required while eating, sleeping, showering, or when social distancing is possible.

    Can The Emily Program test for coronavirus at our sites?
    No, all testing is done through the regional health departments in collaboration with the CDC. We do not have these capabilities and will direct clients to a medical healthcare facility.

    Can visitors still come to The Emily Program sites?
    Our residential sites are restricting visitors at this time. We are supporting virtual visits to continue to support clients and families through these exceptional times.

    When are The Emily Program outpatient sites expected to reopen for in-person treatment?
    With the help of feedback from clients and staff, we are in the process of developing a plan for reopening that ensures we are doing everything possible to keep our clients and staff safe. The timeline for reopening may vary by site and/or state. We don't anticipate a sudden shift back, but rather a period of time during which clients and staff can adjust to resuming in-person care, as needed.

    Will my insurance continue to cover telehealth treatment?
    We understand that insurance coverage for telehealth may be a concern. We do not yet have clear information on whether insurance providers will change their telehealth coverage policies. If there is a shift, we do expect to have adequate notice so we can, in turn, give adequate notice to our clients.

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