Recovery programs, group homes, half-way houses, and anything in between should have a plan for limiting the risk of bed bugs being brought into your facility. Notice I said limit the risk, and not take the risk away all together.
Bedbugs are impossible to keep out of anywhere, but there are things you can do to limit your risk for exposure to the bed bugs in your facility.
Thing number one. Have a plan. Be sure you know what you will do and what you are allowed to do if a client comes in with a bed bug issue. Part of your plan should include a place to do the intake. Be sure the staff doing the intake knows what to look for. Are there visible bugs on the person? Ask questions. Have you or anyone you know been dealing with bed bugs. ? They will most likely tell you. Have a change of cloths handy in different sizes. Have a new or working , well maintained larger sized washer and dryer handy. If bugs are found, see if you can convince the clients to get changed and let the staff was and dry the cloths. Heat from the dryer will kill all stages of the bug. Be sure to get the sneakers and if they have a duffel bag that should go into the dryer as well. Crisis averted.
Maybe you have a program where the folks come to your facility for a day program or a recovery program. You may be aware that they are dealing with the bed bug problem at home. How do you help prevent them from being brought into your facility? One thing you can do is buy a large clear plastic garment bag that zippers. This will be the client's "locker". It will be here that they will hang their coat and place their lunch box. If they have a back pack or other bag, they place it in here as well. Now zip it up and hang it up. Contained.
Sometimes you can only do so much. Being proactive and having a plan will help to limit the risk of bringing bedbugs into your facility. Training staff on what to look for and what to do when bed bugs are found will go a long way. Identifying a bed bug issue early on rather than when it is a full blown infestation will help you and the community you are serving enjoy a bed bug free experience.