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WHY CHOOSE US?

Re-Opening Notice! 5/27/20

Hello

We’ve missed you!  It’s been far too long, but we hope you and your family are well, and have been able to manage through these challenging and confusing last few months.  It’s certainly been a seismic shift in our world; we are all working around a new “normal”, and trying to understand what that means.

Keeping  You (& Us) As Safe As Possible

During the past months, many of our clients have successfully used telehealth to receive services.  In fact, we are still recommending Telehealth for appropriate clients, and sessions are available in the following service areas: Psychotherapy, Psychiatric consultations and medication management, Academic support, Speech and language therapy, Behavioral/Parenting support, OT sessions, feeding sessions and groups via the Zoom platform.

However, there are cases where telehealth is not viable, and in-person services are necessary. For example, some clients are too young to successfully navigate telehealth, while in other instances, testing procedures are less valid when administered via telehealth.  Therefore, Sasco River Center is gently re-opening our doors for in-person evaluation and treatment.

We are doing this, though, cautiously.  As we reopen, we will be exceeding state and CDC guidelines so as to keep you, and us, safe.  To this end, we have created a brand-new 14-page internal manual which outlines for our providers what needs to happen before, during and after sessions to maximize everyone’s safety.  The strategies include minimizing person-to-person contact, increasing fresh air, frequent cleanings and use of a new EPA-approved hand sanitizer.  We are happy to talk through the details of our comprehensive company-wide policies and procedures in more detail, but in general, safety is our main guiding principle.  

That being said, we are happy to begin to offer the following “in-person” services, for both Testing/Evaluation & OT/Sensory Processing.

Assessment Options

In-office Remote Evaluations

We have developed a new program to safely administer “In-office Remote Evaluations”, which takes place in one physical clinic location, but in two separate offices.  Using this program, we will be able to conduct complete psychoeducational, neuropsychological and speech/language assessments for most children, teens and adults. Providing tele-assessment within the office setting offers many technical and practical advantages over a conventional tele-assessment model, while still maintaining safe social distancing throughout the process.  Read on for more details on the process, and explanatory diagrams.

Program Details

  • Throughout the testing process, the psychologist and the patient are in separate offices within the same clinic connected via a secure telehealth platform. This allows for safe social distancing throughout the testing process.
  • The Psychologist’s Office is equipped with a computer with video conferencing and a document camera. This enables the patient/child to see the psychologist as well as necessary visual stimuli that can be presented either via screen share or the document camera.
  • The Patient’s Office is equipped with a computer (with videoconferencing), document camera (so the psychologist can monitor written work), and an additional device that captures other angles in order for the psychologist to make more thorough behavioral observations.
  • For younger children, next to the patient office will be a Parent/caregiver Area, which will allow the parent/caregiver to be nearby and reachable in case the child needs assistance. The child can also have some of their belongings in this area and walk in during breaks.

Safety Precautions

The following precautions will be taken to maximize safety:

  • Only one patient will be tested in the assigned testing areas per day.
  • Social distancing is maintained throughout testing
  • Parents take the child’s (and their own) temperature before leaving the house; and clinicians will engage in the same self-analysis.  If the psychologist, child, or parent shows any signs of a cold, fever, or related symptoms, the evaluation will be rescheduled.
  • Rooms are fully sanitized in a manner that limits potential contamination of surfaces utilizing sanitizing materials that have been fully approved and recommended by State and Federal health experts.
  • Parents/children bring their own snacks and toys.
  • During breaks, the patient stays within the patient office, adjacent parent room, or goes outside of the building to prevent contamination of other surfaces within the suite.
  • Only one family member per patient enters the clinic.
  • Intake and follow-up meetings with parents will be handled remotely.

Note that, In-office Remote Evaluations are not appropriate for all patients and do have some limitations.  Interested families can discuss appropriateness of the In-office Remote Evaluations and their limitations with our clinicians.

In-office Remote Evaluation Setup Diagrams

Occupational Therapy/Sensory Options

We are reopening with a variety of options so families can choose what best suits their therapeutic needs, while respecting personal preferences during these challenging times.  We will be offering: 

  • Telehealth
  • Outdoor Sessions (Your House or Darien Location)
  • In-Clinic Sessions (Limited)
  • OT Teleheatlh, Outdoor and In-clinic Assessments
  • Consultation Packages
  • Summer Programs, Biking Lessons and Gardening
  • Sasco Monthly Sensory Boxes
  • OT Supply Crates

Telehealth

When possible, we are still recommending Telehealth for clients.  Telehealth sessions have been going very well and will continue to be available for our clients.  We have been providing OT sessions, feeding sessions and groups via the Zoom platform.

For those who elect to use Telehealth, we have also created an OT Supply Crate that can be added to enhance the sessions and add to home programming.  See Below for more details.

Outdoor Sessions

The research is pointing to the outdoors, particularly where well-ventilated and sunny, being relatively safe.  We are taking advantage of this and the recent nice weather to see patients outside.

At Your Home

If you would like, one of our therapists is able to treat in your backyard.  We would be happy to come to your house, and the equipment and/or games you already have to treat.  As an option, you can add an OT supply crate (see below) for more 

Darien Clinic Outdoor Space

Our new location in Darien has lovely private outdoor space on the grounds.  We’ve begun offering outdoor sessions here.  Some of our children have been enjoying a change of scenery.  We will be roping off areas with colorful flags to have visual boundaries.

In-Clinic Therapy Sessions 

We are reopening both the Stamford and Wilton gyms for clients.  We are very excited to be able to treat again in our gym spaces.  To ensure maximum safety, we will following strict protocol:

  • Scheduling will be limited 
  • Only one client will be seen in a therapy room at a time.
  • Therapy rooms have been cleaned and have necessary supplies only in each room
  • Sessions will be spaced with 30 minutes between sessions to allow for our EPA-approved disinfectant spray  
  • Staff will be wearing masks
  • Clients are expected to wear masks as well. 
  • We will be escorting clients in from the parking lots to avoid waiting room use
  • Feedback from sessions to parents will be provided remotely  

OT/Sensory Processing Assessment Options

For those who need OT/Sensory Processing assessment and/or evaluation, we currently have the following options:

Tele-Assessment

One hour remote assessment, followed by half hour parent feedback session

Outdoors Assessment

Can be performed outside at our Darien Clinic (330 Post Road), or in your own backyard, using your own equipment (or an “OT Supply Crate”; see below for more information)

In-clinic Assessment

Subject to strict safety protocols and some limitations we are now offering in-clinic assessments at our Stamford and Wilton locations.

Contact us for more information and appropriateness for each of these options

Consultation Packages

Away for the Summer? Need Extra Support?

As always, we can work with you to develop a package that fits your family’s needs. All consultative packages have the flexibility to be offered in-person, virtually, or a combination of both depending on the state guidelines at the time. All consultation packages can be redeemed at your leisure at any point between June 15th and September 1st. 

Stop the Summer Slide

With the transition to distance learning, less frequent occupational therapy sessions, and limited interaction with peers, a “summer slide” might have you seeing a loss of academic, social, and behavioral gains. We have developed this package to ensure you and your child have the tools and strategies to be successful next school year. 

Includes:

  • Parent Goal Meeting: An occupational therapist will help you to develop specific goals based on areas of concern. A written report will break down these goals into measurable steps to help set you and your family up for success. 
  • Sensory Diet and Parent Training Session: One of our occupational therapists will then create a customized sensory diet based on your child’s needs and the changing times. An hour long parent training session will teach you how to carry out your child’s sensory diet program.
  • Three Hours of Consultation: Consultation can be utilized either telehealth or in-person and in any increments of time throughout the summer. 

Therapeutic Listening Bundles

We use Integrated Listening Systems (iLS) therapy to enhance and improve children’s sensory processing and auditory processing abilities.  We have found receiving iLS during Occupational Therapy is the most efficient method of providing sensory input to optimize listening function.  We are now offering iLS through virtual, outdoor or OT clinic sessions.  Please contact Dlindberg@sascoriver.com to discuss this further.  

Home Sensory Gym Recommendations:

After a virtual tour of your current sensory area, our occupational therapists will develop individualized recommendations.

Summer

Biking Lessons

Back by popular demand!  Since groups are still not recommended, and we are avoiding public spaces for now, we are offering private biking lessons (with siblings or individuals) either at your home or our Darien Clinic. The kids have been loving having a chance to be outside and learn an amazing new skill or work on a new aspect of riding. Biking sessions are one hour in length and involve sensory warm-up, coordination activity, biking skills and a craft.  Please contact Mwalsh@sascoriver.com for more information.

Gardening Sessions

For the gardener in you!  We now have gardening sessions available through telehealth or in person one-on-one (or for a family) at our Darien location outdoors.  We will deliver the supplies to you weekly.  Topics will change weekly, but each one creates an opportunity to learn more about the environment and the different aspects of gardening through various forms of sensory input.  Sessions are an hour in length.  Please contact Mmoore@sascoriver.com for more information.  

Small Group Camps (beginning July, 2020)

We will be having small group camps in July and multidisciplinary camps in August.  Please contact Mwalsh@sascoriver.com  for more information of these fun summer activities and to be put on a list.

Sasco Monthly Sensory Boxes

We are launching an interactive sensory box program.  Each month, we will offer a box about vestibular processing, core stability and other therapeutic themes.  Included in the box will be 6 occupational therapy activity cards for children and parents to explore together.

OT Supply Crates

OT Supply Crates will be available for clients who would prefer to use only their own materials for sessions.  These personal crates can be transported to/from home, and include everything needed for a session, including duvet covers to be put on our existing crash pads for your child’s private use only.  These crates contain everything you need for a full treatment session including yoga/peanut balls, scooter boards, tunnels, bean bags, fine motor objects and fidgets.  Please reach out to Melissa (mkahn@sascoriver.com) to find out more details of these.  Each supply crate can be customized with additional materials for your child if you speak with your child’s individual therapist.

Call Us

We are ready for you.  We are very excited to see you and the kids again.  Please contact your regular therapist, or either of us below, to find out more information or to schedule an appointment. 

Christopher Bogart, PhD & Melissa Kahn, MS OTR/L
Co-Executive Directors

Let’s Play “Word Run”

Word Run is an OT game you can play with your child at home.

This activity, led by Deanna Lindberg, works on using your vestibular and visual systems together. Also works on visual scanning, working memory and spelling skills!

https://youtu.be/LR45_U4LDEQ

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Start with two pieces of paper with the entire alphabet on it in a random order. You can make your own sheets at home, or download our pre-formatted sheets HERE.
  2. Set up the papers at least 12 feet apart from each other
  3. Run back and forth to “spell a word” touching one letter each time
  4. To add to the challenge you can time the runs, race, skip, or cross legged run
  5. Remember to have fun!
word run graphic
Upload our sheets here.

 

Quarantine Parenting Tips And Advice 3-16

Quarantine Parenting Advice

Parenting Survival Guide - CLICK HERE for quarantine parenting advice
Parenting Survival Guide

These are uncertain times. One of the things we might be uncertain about is how to remain calm, and be a parent. We have some suggestions for you, in our “Parenting Survival Guide”, and be the best parent you can be during the quarantine. Please download the PDF below, and feel free to give to anyone you know who might find it useful.

Stay healthy,

Team Sasco River Center

Services Update 03-13 (COVID-19)

Hello Sasco River Center, Southfield Center, Sensory Kids Clients & Extended Community,

We remain open, but we have options for those who aren’t able to come to a clinic

We hope you and your family are well in these uncertain times we are experiencing with the recent global focus upon the coronavirus. We know that this uncertainty can lead you and your children to experience various emotions including frustration, anxiety, sadness and confusion. We also know that predictability and routines are best for everyone’s psychological and emotional well-being, so we are examining the many safe and creative ways that we can continue to support you and your family. As we are hearing about schools that are closing and other schools considering this action, we wanted to continue to communicate clearly about what we are doing at Sasco River Center to place your safety as our top priority while we continue to provide the expert care that you’ve come to rely upon from our clinical team.

Here is a helpful link from the CDC on keeping our workplaces, schools and homes safe: LINK. Note that we are following the advice that “mental health and other medical facilities should stay open” from the head of the CDC, appearing on CNN morning of 3/12.

Cleaning

We remain vigilant and prepared throughout this dynamic situation. We are closely monitoring local, state and federal sources for specific guidance, and are stringently adhering to all guidelines relating to cleanliness, personal space, and absolute restrictions on admittance of any person with any cold or flu-like symptoms in any of our spaces. While we have always focused on cleaning and sterilizing our therapeutic spaces, over the past two weeks we have increased our cleaning to daily across all spaces, with additional wiping down of therapeutic spaces between client sessions. We have also reviewed with our team members proper greeting and space recommendations, along with expectations for frequent handwashing and usage of hand sterilizer. While we believe that this greatly reduces the transmission of germs, we absolutely understand that many clients are seeking additional ways to maintain services while limiting contact with multiple people in confined spaces.

Services Accommodations

For all our clients, we are offering the opportunity to be met outside of the building and escorted by your clinician to their therapy space so that time in the waiting room is unnecessary. If you would like to access this option, please email your clinician or contact our receptionist so this can be arranged.

TELEHEALTH SESSIONS:

In addition, for any service for which videoconferencing or telephone guidance would be appropriate (psychotherapy, occupational therapy/sensory processing, psychiatric medication management, behavioral consultations, parent coaching, learning services), each of our team members has been equipped with and trained on technologies that will allow ongoing remote connection in a safe and confidential fashion. In a telehealth session, we can guide you on what to do with your child and/or we can continue to work directly with your child over video technology to continue progress toward therapeutic goals. To take advantage of these remote therapeutic opportunities, we will need you to sign a telehealth consent form. Your clinician will be contacting you and providing the form that needs to be signed.

TESTING:

For all children being tested, we have now created a reduced number of smaller spaces in each center that can be more easily sterilized between students rather than conducting testing across several spaces. These rooms and testing materials will be sterilized between students.

Sensory/OT, Therapy and/or Psychotherapy:

We are offering the following options:

  • For those of you continuing with sessions at one of our clinics, as noted above, we will be happy to meet you and your child in the parking lot, to avoid congregating in the waiting room. We are scheduling each child individually in therapeutic spaces to avoid contact with other clients. In addition, we are spreading out sessions to allow time to clean and sanitize between sessions.
  • For those of you that wish to continue this important in-person therapeutic work but do not want to come to one of our centers, we have developed additional options. We are able to meet at designated local playgrounds that we have already researched for safety and access to therapeutic activities. In addition, our team of sensory experts would be happy to do in-home sessions as well. We will do our best to extend hours and options so that we can meet the scheduling needs of as many of our clients as possible.
  • SENSORY ADDITIONAL: As an added opportunity during this time when your children might be out of school for an extended time, our team of sensory experts can provide sensory consultations that will address sensory strategies for you to support your child’s sensory needs while away from school.

Of course, we recognize that many of you will want to maintain the same level of in-person services and our team of clinicians will continue to offer their expertise in the highly individualized and personal way that we always have. In addition to the enhanced cleaning noted above, we are taking other precautions to increase your safety.

Other Options (Stay Tuned)

Finally, we are in the process of developing some opportunities for your children to participate in fun and therapeutic activities outside of the center. For example, our occupational therapists are trained to provide bike riding classes to help get the kids out and keep moving, while optimizing their time off while the weather is nice. We are also working on some small camp ideas. Stay tuned for details on these opportunities.

Thank You

As always, we thank you for the trust you place in us. We want to assure you that safety along with high quality care are our top priorities. Please reach out with any questions and we look forward to continuing our work together. Note that we will continue to update you as the situation unfolds.

Stay healthy,

Chris Bogart + Melissa Kahn

Executive Directors, Sasco River Center

Say Hello to Sasco River Center

Happy New Year and New Decade! In the spirit of “new” things, we are writing today to share exciting news: Sensory Kids & the Southfield Center for Development are merging to form the Sasco River Center!

More than a year ago we opened a joint clinic in Wilton, where we offer occupational therapy/ sensory integration treatment, psychological evaluations, psycho-therapeutic services, language therapy, and learning services. This location was the outgrowth of years of successful collaboration with many clients, which led us to explore how this would be enhanced by being under one roof. We’re happy to report that it has been an overwhelming success; such a success, that we decided to formalize our collaboration by fully combining the two practices.

Sasco River Center will operate out of three clinical centers, Stamford, Darien, and Wilton, and offer a comprehensive variety of effective diagnostic and therapeutic services. In addition, this coming summer the Darien center will be relocating and growing, to a new state-of-the-art facility incorporating a client lounge, comfortable offices, and an expansive OT area.
From a client’s perspective, it will be the same high-quality care and therapeutic experience with the same clinicians and administrative team members, but more comprehensive, and more collaborative, and with greater access to other professionals. In addition, new services will include:Intensive Parent Support Programs;Auditory Therapy Programs for both children and adults;Reflex Integration Physical Therapy;Feeding Program; andTransitions Department, including Career Coaching for young adults and professionals
Over the next few months, we will be building a new website. For now though, you can head to sascoriver.com to sign up for updates. Of course, you are always welcome to reach out to either of us; our previous contact information still works, or you can use the emails below.

We are excited to further define the way that clinical care should be, and we look forward to collaborating with you, our community partners.  Best wishes for a wonderful 2020 and beyond,
Dr. Christopher Bogart, PhDExecutive Directorcbogart@sascoriver.comMelissa Kahn, MS OTR/LExecutive Directormkahn@sascoriver.com