Update from Administrator – October 30, 2020

October 30, 2020

Dear Families,

As always, our team and I hope this email finds you safe and healthy.

We had two staff members test positive yesterday during our routine testing process. They are off of the schedule and DOH was notified and we are following all of their directives. We will continue testing and reporting at regular intervals as required by CMS, CDC and DPH.

I want to reiterate that the COVID-19 pandemic is still active and our state, as well the community, are reporting an uptick in new cases of COVID. In light of this we need to remember that we will have positives from time to time and the important thing is to mitigate risk and spread. This serves as a reminder that we must all remain vigilant in following all guidelines, recommendations, and best practices to stay safe and fight this pandemic. Wash (or use alcohol sanitizer) your hands, wear your mask, and watch your (social)distance.

Some updates
• We STRONGLY encourage residents to receive an annual Influenza Vaccine; please consider completing a consent form to ensure your loved one receives their vaccine, if you have not done so already. We will continue to administer flu vaccines with a goal of 100% participation of residents. Our staff is required to receive the vaccination, for everyone’s health and safety.
• The RI Department of Health continues to do infection control surveys at homes almost monthly. We just had another survey on Wednesday – and the surveyor was very pleased with our policies and procedures.
• Food is now allowed to be dropped off by families for their loved one’s enjoyment and take out delivery has also been authorized. Please coordinate delivery with us.
• Each nursing unit has tablets assigned for resident use such as virtual visits, games, etc. and many of our residents are enjoying learning how to use this technology and having the world at their fingertips.
• Every weekday, I and my administrative team round a different nursing unit and meet with our residents to let them know we’re here for them and give them an opportunity to voice any questions or concerns they may have directly to us. We also use this time during rounds to assess our residents, our environment, and ask our residents specific questions such as satisfaction with meals, preferences, activities being provided, interaction and response from staff, proper operation of all equipment in room and more!
Indoor Visits
We have implemented our indoor visitation policy and procedures following to state and federal requirements. Based on that, nursing homes and visitors must adhere to the following conditions:
• We must limit the number of visitors per patient at one time and limit the total number of visitors in the center at a time. This will be based on the amount of physical space we have available for our designated visitation area, which will be our Main Dining Room.
• We need to limit the duration of visits to help ensure all patients can receive visitors. Just like our outdoor visits, once we have more experience behind us, we can adjust this, if necessary.
• Cleaning and disinfecting of the designated visitation area will occur by our staff in between visits. This is another factor affecting the amount of time and numbers of visitors we can have in our center.
• Screening for anyone who enters our center – temperature and health screen questionnaire – will take place by a member of our team.
• We cannot allow visitors to move freely throughout our center; visitors will go directly to the designated visitation area, in the Main Dining Room.
• Hand hygiene must be followed and personal protection equipment (PPE) must be worn by visitors.
• Social distancing requirements remain as they do for our outside visits.
• We offer indoor and outdoor supervised social distancing visits 5 times a week.

Indoor, End Stage of Life Care Visits

Should a new case of COVID be identified in the center, all inside visits, except end stage of life, will be temporarily put on hold.

Outside & “Alternative” Visits

Please know that “alternative” visitations will continue.
Remember that we do offer iPads for our residents to use for video visits, phone calls, etc. to ensure that you and your loved ones remain in contact, as best as you can during these very uncertain times.
As always, thank you for your patience and please stay safe and healthy!
Thank you and please stay safe and healthy!

Thank you,

Nicholas Lutzel

October 30, 2020