Written by: Phyllis Stephenson, Executive Director of Carolina and ABC Adoption Services
Our team at CAS ABC hopes each of you are staying safe during this challenging time. At CAS ABC, we are moving forward cautiously with new COVID 19 guidelines. Please know we have returned to our regular staffing, some office-based, and others are working from home to support your adoption journey.
We have now established how we may safely move forward with the in-home home study and post-adoption processes with the guidance of state laws and local regulations. An overview of our modified home visit is described is as follows:
- Social Workers will be scheduled to provide a home visit by the agency in accordance with CAS ABC procedures and those of the placing agency as applicable.
- Social Workers will contact the family to explain these modifications and make arrangements for the visit. The social worker will verify that no one in the home has been diagnosed with COVID 19, presented symptoms, or has been knowingly exposed to COVID 19 for the last 14 days. If the response is yes, the home visit will be delayed until 14 days after the exposure or illness. Visits should not be planned if either the social worker, or the family members are experiencing COVID 19 symptoms such as coughing, sore throat, fever, loss of taste and smell, and difficulty breathing.
- The home visit will take place outside. Social Workers may need to take a chair with them so they may sit outside, at least 6 feet apart, and meet with the family members per regulations.
- Social Workers should make sure that the family has a cell phone or other device that the family member may complete a virtual walking tour of the home for the social worker to see during the visit.
- During the visit, the social worker and family will both wear masks at any time they are closer than 6 feet when outside and or inside the home. The use of gloves and hand sanitizer will be used as appropriate. Gloves and masks may be provided by the agency for the workers.
- Additionally, during the current environment of protest and curfews, we ask that home visits are planned to be completed and the social worker returns to their home prior to the time of curfew if one is in place during that time.
As this pandemic is impacting every family differently, you should only schedule home visits when you feel it is safe for your family. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this modified home visit process please notify our team. Thank you for allowing CAS ABC to be part of your adoption journey.