Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) Secretary Laura Howard today announced that visitation at all four state hospitals has been restricted effective immediately as a measure of precaution to reduce exposure of COVID-19 to residents and staff.
“Restrictions on visitors at state hospitals are a difficult but necessary step in our mission to encourage social distancing and limit exposure to the virus not only for our residents, who are some of the most vulnerable Kansans we serve, but our staff as well,” Secretary Howard said. “To date, there have been no cases of COVID-19 in any of our state hospital facilities and we are making vigilant efforts to continue to provide a safe, healthy environment.”
Consistent with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ guidance recently released for nursing facilities, new restrictions on visitors and non-essential individuals entering the Kansas Neurological Institute, Parsons State Hospital and Training Center, Osawatomie State Hospital and Larned State Hospital are in place:
• Restricts all visitors, effective immediately, with exceptions for compassionate care, such as end-of-life situations;
o No one showing signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection, such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat is allowed on campus.
o No one having been in contact with a person with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 is allowed on campus.
o No one having traveled to countries with sustained community transmission within the last 14 days is allowed on campus. Currently those countries include Italy, Iran, China and South Korea. An updated listing of these countries can be found at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/after-travel-precautions.html.
• Restricts all volunteers and nonessential health care personnel and other personnel (i.e. barbers);
• Restricts internal and public group activities or appointments;
• Implements active screening of residents and health care personnel for fever and respiratory symptoms;
• Suspends the Foster Grandparent Program (unique to KNI) and volunteer programs;
• Redirects vendors and deliveries to alternate sites on campuses; and
• Closes facilities on state hospital campuses to the public.
Parents and guardians of residents at state hospitals are being asked not to come to campuses and instead check with hospital administration about alternative ways to communicate with their loved ones. Each hospital will work to accommodate visitors via telephone or video if possible.
In end-of-life cases, visitors will be equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks, and the visit will be limited to a specific room only.
“The populations we serve in our state hospitals are in many cases more vulnerable to COVID-19 than others. That, coupled with the rapid spread of COVID-19 in people who are in close proximity to each other on an ongoing basis, make it necessary to restrict, or in some cases suspend, normal day-today activities,” Deputy Secretary of Hospitals and Facilities Scott Brunner said.
For more information on COVID-19 visit the Kansas Department for Health and Environment’s Resource Center at: www.kdheks.gov/coronavirus.
You also can call 1-866-534-3463 (1-866-KDHEINF).

(800)273-8255 Suicide Hotline

Categorized: Uncategorized

Holidays and winter can be a rough time for many people.  In the last two days, I found out, 3 people I know tried to commit suicide in 2019.  Suicide is not the answer.  If you are feeling down or in a bad place, please talk to someone.  The suicide hotline is always available (800)273-8255.

Runway of Dreams Foundation and Zappos are hosting the first nationally live-streamed fashion  show with models having disabilities wearing adaptive clothing and shoes. It will be next Wednesday, March 27 in Las Vegas from 3:30-5:30 (Central Time).  The link to the live stream feed is zappos.com/adaptive/fashionshow. This link will only be active during the show 3:30-5:30 (Central Time) on March 27.  Bookmark the live link now or check back with us next week and we’ll re-post it!

Click here to learn more about the Runway of Dreams Foundation.

Thank you, Veterans!

Categorized: Independent Living, Uncategorized

RCIL would like to thank all Veterans for their service.  Here are some family members and co-worker that RCIL would like to send an extra big thank you to!  (You can click on the pictures to see it enlarged, titles are underneath the photo)




contestants 2015 committee and MWKS 15




MWKS 2015 & Little Ms.

The Ms. Wheelchair Kansas ceremony was held on Sunday, March 15th at the Capital Plaza Hotel.  Keara Hockman, Jessica Soderlund, and Carrie Sunday were this year’s contestants.  They began their weekend of events on Friday with orientation and getting to know each other and the committee members.  On Saturday, they participated in learning sessions, two interview sessions with judges, and a Zumba session.  Saturday night the contestants and committee went to the Ronald McDonald House in Topeka and cooked a homemade dinner for the guest staying at the house.  On Sunday, they ladies were judged once more on their platform speech and two questions asked on stage.  When the results were tallied, Carrie Sunday from Overbrook was crowned Ms. Wheelchair Kansas 2015.  New to the program this year, the committee chose a Little Miss Wheelchair Kansas 2015, Delany Murphy.  Delany is 10 years old and from Ottawa.  If you would like more information about Ms. Wheelchair Kansas please visit their website www.mswheelchairkansas.org.



Ms Wheelchair Kansas - Celebrating the strength within

The 2015 Ms. Wheelchair Kansas will be crowned on Sunday and YOU are invited to witness this great event in our state! Not only are we crowning a new titleholder, but we are also crowning our FIRST EVER Little Miss Wheelchair Kansas! Be there as we say farewell to our current titleholder, Bridgid Schwilling, and welcome a new titleholder and Little Miss titleholder.

The Ms. Wheelchair Kansas crowning ceremony is scheduled for Sunday, March 15, 2015, from 2:00 to 4:00 pm at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Topeka, KS. The ceremony will be open to the public and free of charge. It will include platform speech presentations by the contestants, a keynote speaker, farewell from the current titleholder, crowning of the new Ms. Wheelchair Kansas 2015, and announcement of the first Little Miss Wheelchair Kansas.

The mission of the MWKS program is to annually select one woman, who is wheelchair mobile, who will successfully advocate, educate, and empower all people on a state level. This is NOT a beauty contest, but rather a competition to select the most articulate, accomplished delegate who will serve as a role model and spokesperson for people with disabilities in Kansas. The crowned titleholder will have the opportunity to travel throughout the state educating various groups about the issues of importance to people with disabilities. Her reign will ultimately lead up to an opportunity to attend the national competition in July, where she will represent Kansas and compete for the title of Ms. Wheelchair America.

We are also launching a program for young girls in the form of Little Miss Wheelchair Kansas. The Little Miss program will give the younger generation of 5-12 year olds the opportunity to educate, meet people, share their voice, and learn from adult role models. The first titleholder has been selected for this honorary position and will be announced and crowned during this year’s ceremony. We will also be hosting a Little Miss Meet-and-Greet for any young girls, their families, and community members who want to know more about this new program! See attached flyer for full details.

Come to the crowning on March 15 to see what this program is all about and witness this great event where  Ms. Wheelchair Kansas 2015 and Little Miss Wheelchair Kansas will be announced! For more information, contact Carrie Greenwood at 785-267-5982 or mswheelchairkansas@yahoo.com.


RCIL Remembers 9/11

Categorized: Uncategorized

Eleven years ago today our lives were forever changed.  Please read below as RCIL staff share their thoughts and stories of 9/11.

Vicki Gillespie – “I was with my RCIL family!”

Kathy Holloway – “We had a staffing meeting in Osage City that day!  I remember standing outside in the parking lot looking at all of the circles in the sky, of the planes turning around to land.  All I wanted to do was get home and get all of my family together!  I remember just praying for the families and our country.  I had a fear that I had never had before!”

Macy Gaines – “I was working in the shipping dept at Sigma Tek in Augusta, shipping air craft parts. I worked with only one other person. When the radio stated the second plane had hit we just looked at each other, and without saying a word we both went to the shipping offices were the other ladies did the paperwork. We found them all huddled around a single radio. My oldest son was a baby in daycare. I really wanted to get him and go home. On 9/11, I and say an extra-long prayer for our nation, for our nation’s leaders, and for all those who have been traumatized by the event.”

Stephanie Wold – “I was on my way to staffing when we heard about the attack on the twin towers and then when we arrived at staffing where they had the TV set up in the back room and when realized the magnitude of what was going on. I would like to send my thoughts and prayers out to the families.”

Mandy Smith – “I was a junior in high school.  I was in American History class when the first plane had hit.  When the bell rang for next period no one could move.  The rest of the day we just sat in disbelief as we watched the television.  I remember sitting in Mrs. Curtis’ room watching the second plane hit and thinking this couldn’t be real.  I don’t think the depth of what happened that day really hit me until weeks later.  My thoughts are with the families of individuals who were on those planes and buildings that day.”

Jennifer Silvey – “I was 17 years old. I lived in Tebbetts, Missouri and I just got up to make some food as I prepared to pack my bags because I was leaving for Job Corps the following day. I watched the 2nd plane hit and will never forget it. Even at 17 I fully understood that things would never again be the same.”

Deone Wilson – “I say a special prayer of thanksgiving for our armed forces. I also pray for the family members of the people that died on that terrible day.”

Doris Hammons – “I was headed to Osage City to Staffing and the receptionist called on my cell phone and she was hysterical. I did not know how bad this was until I got to Staffing and saw the news on TV. We were all sent home to be close to our families.  It was a very scary time in my life. This disaster took away my false since of safety in the United States. My heart is saddened every year on this date for the families of victims. But now my family does have a disaster plan in place. So we can all meet up as a family and be together even in dangerous times.”

Becky Brewer – “I was here at RCIL.  We were having staffing that day and right before staffing was to begin, we received word that something was happening.  Mary, our ED at the time, had a television in her office and we began watching the news reports.  Since most people were far from home, staffing was cancelled and everyone was sent home.  I remember seeing airplane vapor trails that made u turns where all aircraft had been ordered to land immediately wherever the closest airstrip they could safely land on was.  Many landed in smaller towns like Salina and Dodge City.  My brother-in-law was in the air headed to Washington D.C. during the attacks and was diverted back to Memphis.  There were many church services held that evening. “

Deanna Wright – “I was at home and it came across the T.V.  I remember it each year by keeping up with what is being done for the families, and for the country.  I am sad that this year the museum is not done, hope next year it will be.  I watch specials every year about 9-11, and with my children.  I remember how scary it was for them because they were just in their teens and early twenties, and had never seen anything like it before.”

RCIL would like to send our thoughts out to all who were affected by the tragedy of 9/11.