Many communities in the greater Kansas City region are considering ways to open and maintain safe environments within their educational systems (e.g., public and private schools, pre-school and daycare settings, center-based behavioral programs, etc.). As community-based therapeutic service providers that contract with a number of these educational facilities and many families’ homes, New Balloon’s team of speech, physical, and occupational therapists are required to adhere to the most recent guiding principles for practice safety created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Presently, individual school and educational service agency locations (in collaboration with state and local health officials) can determine whether and how to implement the CDC’s considerations; However, New Balloon’s skilled therapists are frequently tasked with providing services in multiple locations each day. Our form of service practice, by its very nature, increases the number of interpersonal interactions among different locations each day. This not only places New Balloon therapists in a category of provider the CDC refers to as “highest risk,” but increases the chances of COVID-19 exposure to those with whom we interact at any subsequent location.

Given our region’s most current trend of continuing to set new records for confirmed cases of COVID-19 on a daily basis, New Balloon is responsibly implementing the attached mandatory practice guidelines for all of its therapists and staff.

In accordance with these guidelines, New Balloon will never require its therapists to enter locations that have not implemented similar preventative strategies (e.g., regular hand hygiene, staff use of facial coverings, regular disinfecting of work spaces, adherence to social distancing, etc.). New Balloon’s service providers have been advised that if they choose to provide services in locations that do not adhere to the attached practice guidelines, they do so as individuals subject to their individual liabilities.

Please consider the New Balloon practice directives as interim guidance based on what is currently known about the transmission and severity of COVID-19. The CDC regularly updates its guidance as additional information becomes available. We encourage everyone to check the CDC’s COVID-19 website periodically for updated guidance or contact New Balloon Therapy Services at any time with questions.

New Balloon is proud of our opportunity to work together during this unprecedented time. We will continue to embrace our important role in slowing the spread of COVID-19 and promise to do everything possible to ensure safe and healthy learning environments for the staff, clients, and families we are fortunate enough to serve.


Physical Distancing 

When possible, adhere to the well-established practice of social distancing (maintaining distance of approximately 6 feet) between yourself and others.

Face Coverings 

Although face coverings (cloth or associated medical masks worn over nose and mouth) may be challenging for children to wear in all-day settings such as school, face coverings must be worn by New Balloon therapists, the service location’s on-site staff, and clients/students (as feasible). These are to be considered as most essential in times when physical distancing is difficult.

Staying Home when Appropriate 

Videoconferencing apps (e.g., Zoom, Skype, etc.) should be used as a means of service delivery when possible.

New Balloon therapists must stay home if they have tested positive for or are showing COVID-19 symptoms.

New Balloon therapists who have recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19 should also stay home and monitor their health.

Hand Hygiene and Respiratory Etiquette

Handwash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and increase monitoring to ensure adherence among students and on-site staff.

If soap and water are not readily available, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol can be used (for adults and older children who can safely use hand sanitizer).

Encourage others and students to cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash and hands washed immediately with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Adequate Personal Protective Supplies 

New Balloon therapists must carry adequate personal safety supplies, including soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol (for staff and older children who can safely use hand sanitizer), paper towels, tissues, disinfectant wipes, additional/back-up cloth face coverings.

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