TO OUR HEALTH CARE COMMUNITY

The COVID-19 Telehealth Program will provide $200 million in funding, appropriated by Congress as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act – with the purpose of helping health care facilities provide connected care services to patients in response to the pandemic (at home or mobile locations). The Program will provide immediate support to eligible health care providers responding to the pandemic by fully funding their:

  • Telecommunications services
  • Information services
  • Devices necessary to provide critical connected care services.

Applications are currently being accepted for the COVID-19 Telehealth Program via the FCC application portal. Funding decisions will be made on a rolling basis, and the FCC will accept/review applications until the funding is exhausted or the current COVID-19 pandemic has ended.

For additional COVID-19 Telehealth Program details, FAQs, eligibility and applications, please visit: https://www.fcc.gov/covid-19-telehealth-program.

 

Creative ways to use the internet to connect

Now, as we practice social distancing, that “handy tool” may be becoming a central part of our lives. While it certainly cannot replace good old-fashioned conversations at the neighborhood bakery or hands-on learning in the classroom, it does have the ability to keep us connected in many ways. And let’s face it, generally, we are social beings. The internet provides that outlet.

Here’s a handful of creative ways people are using their internet connection to connect:

We want to make sure you are having the best experience with your internet. Visit our website www.cvctx.com, and feel free to contact us to troubleshoot issues you may be having with Wi-Fi or to increase your bandwidth as your needs grow during this time. We’re in it together.

 

COVID-19 Updates

COVID-19 Update from Colorado Valley Communications

Colorado Valley Communications is focused on keeping you healthy and connected.

At Colorado Valley Communications, we value the health and safety of our customers and employees above all else, which is why we are closely monitoring events concerning COVID-19 (coronavirus). We are sensitive to the impact this pandemic is having on our customers and employees, while recognizing the importance of keeping our fellow Texans connected. With these thoughts in mind, we have implemented the following measures:

What we are Doing Internally

We are implementing policies to protect our employees and customers from exposure to the virus.

  • Employees who feel sick are being instructed to stay home.
  • We are identifying jobs that can be performed remotely and setting those employees up to work from home.
  • Beginning March 13, 2020, we limited foot traffic at our office by closing the lobby. While our lobby is closed, we are not. We have many options to remotely pay your bill including the SmartHub app, which is a free app that customers can download on their Apple or Android devices. Visit cvctx.com/billing for more information about bill pay options.
  • Before any employee will be dispatched to a customer’s home for a service call, we will ask the customer a series of questions to determine the risk of exposure to our employee. If any risk exists, the service call will be rescheduled if possible. If the service call is an emergency, special precautions must be taken by our employee and our customers before a visit can be made.

Higher Than Normal Internet Usage

During this time, many of our customers are working from home, continuing education at home, and may be streaming video or gaming too. All of these applications require higher speeds and may create buffering if the speed you are currently subscribed to doesn’t support simultaneous use of these applications. Check our bandwidth calculator at cvctx.com/internet to find the bandwidth needs for your household, and fill out the online sign-up located on the home page to find out the speed available at your home.

Keeping You Informed

Colorado Valley Communications is making every effort to keep you informed about how we are responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, along with ways you can protect yourself and your family. To ensure you see our information:

  • Follow us on Facebook: facebook.com/cvctx
  • Follow us on Instagram: Instagram.com/colorado_valley
  • Visit our website: cvctx.com

Please also note we have longer than normal call volumes at this time, so please be patient with us as our team is going above and beyond to make sure everyone has the connectivity they need.

As we navigate these uncertain times, we encourage our communities to stay safe. We recommend you visit the Center for Disease Control (cdc.gov) website for updates on COVID-19 and preventative measures you can take to keep you and your family safe. We are proud to be your local service provider, and as your neighbor, we are here to help you.

Conquering Quarantine: Continuity is King

By now, we are beginning to settle into the new (if temporary) reality that may include working from home while homeschooling or babysitting kids, while simultaneously having fewer and fewer opportunities to “just get out of the house.” Many of us have only been in self-imposed quarantine for a few days and extreme cabin fever is already setting in.

Beyond washing out hands and not panicking, what can we do to maintain a sense of normalcy for our families? Productivity with work? And academic continuity for our kids?

The most important thing when everything seems so strange is to find consistency and routine where possible. Lots of your daily activities are up in the air—isolation from friends, lack of activities for your kids, finances, working from home—but you have control over more than you think.

Work

In this wired era, we really are more capable of being highly productive without coming into the office. Let technology be your ally, but remember that people are what hold your organization together and drive your purpose:

  1. Stay connected – On days when you don’t have scheduled calls, organize quick check-ins with your employees or colleagues. Use video chat when possible to add a little human touch.
  2. Stay flexible – You may be asked to do tasks you never had to do before. Remember you may be covering for a sick colleague (or one who is caring for someone at risk), so keep your chin up and help where you can.
  3. Maintain your schedule – If you always get up at 6, work out, shower, and head to the office by 7, stick to it! Find a workout video on line or go for a run, but get up at your usual time and be at your desk (or kitchen table!) by 7.
  4. Be patient – Most likely your IT department is going to be overwhelmed with people working remotely so prepare yourself for slow speeds and longer than usual wait times from your Help Desk. “Please” and “thank you” will go a long way with your IT guys right now.

Health

With so much unknown about this new coronavirus, we may be inclined to panic or take drastic precautions. Heeding the authority’s advice is critical for the health of the general population and efficacy of the healthcare system, but we can also do our part be keeping healthy on an individual basis:

  1. Stay hydrated – Just like when you have the flu, staying hydrated is absolutely critical. Get an app that records your water intake, keep a tally by the fridge, whatever you have to do to take in at least 64 ounces of water a day.
  2. Take your vitamins – Keep taking your multivitamins to maintain overall health, and up your Vitamin C, B6, and E intake to boost your immunity.
  3. Rest – It’s an anxious time but the sure-fire way to reduce your immunity is to stress and not sleep. Drink some chamomile tea, have a warm bath, and stick to a set bedtime to support healthy sleep.

Kids

Sweet blessings, our children, right? But all day? All week? Yes, but again, don’t panic. Trying to manage homeschooling your kids while also doing work of your own will definitely be a challenge, but it’s doable if you keep a few things in mind:

  1. Maintain a schedule – The temptation for you both may be to treat this like spring break, but just as you need routine, so do your kids. Wake them up at a set time, have a plan for the day and stick to it, and stop at a specified time each day. Set goals and celebrate achievements.
  2. Call in reinforcements – If your math knowledge maxes out at 5th grade, find someone who can help. Most teachers are making themselves available for “office hours” but also reach out to other parents on Facebook or email for help.
  3. Take breaks – Don’t feel like you need to cram every day full of academics. Get outside, exercise, do arts and crafts, bake something, anything to break up the monotony of school with Mom/Dad.
  4. Find creative learning opportunities – Do crossword puzzles together, use math to measure when you bake, take a nature walk and record the plants and animals you see, and use local resources (most libraries are making e-books free for kids) to read, read, read! 

Stay Connected

  1. Do your research: It’s a complicated time and information is changing rapidly. Find a few solid resources (think CDC, your local government) where you can go for up to date information and recommendations rather than relying on Facebook messages or click-bait.
  2. Check in with elderly or friends with underlying medical conditions (virtually): The elderly and the sick should not be going out at this time, so make sure you call, Facetime, or touch base via social media every day to make sure they have the food, medicine, and personal touch they need every day.
  3. Be patient: With more people at home than usual, your internet connection is likely to be slower than usual. When possible, encourage family members to do off-line work while others are doing required online work. For example, if your high schooler is doing a research paper, have her complete all her online research first, log off, and then start writing.

The climate is tenuous right now and much is out of our control. But if we all take a deep breath, keep our bodies healthy, commit to quality work at home, and help our kids keep consistent and continuous study habits, we’ll get through this.

Find the Speed You Need!

Is your internet running slow because of too many devices? Use our online calculator to find out how much bandwidth you actually need based on the number of internet connected devices you have.
It’s that easy!

Unplug Modems During Lightning Storms

PLEASE remember to unplug your high-speed modem and router during lightning storms.  Surge protector can’t always protect your equipment.  If your internet connection runs through the phone line, disconnect the cord from the jack because power surges can also travel through the phone line and fry your equipment.