The risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is exponentially higher in persons 80 years of age and older and in those with chronic health conditions. We also know there is an increased risk among people who live in group settings. Yesterday, Governor Ned Lamont declared civil preparedness and public health emergencies in our state to help with prevention efforts.
Arbors is initiating additional precautionary measures, following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and the and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Public Health (DPH) which has released guidelines for employers and senior care centers to contain the spread of the virus. Our primary responsibility is to keep staff and residents well and safe.
The most effective action right now is prevention and mitigating the risk of the virus spreading into our building. Senior care providers have determined that a contributing factor in the King County Washington deaths within a long-term care center were likely caused by infected facility staff and visitors who introduced the virus into the population.
As of Thursday, March 12th, the following rules will be established to help reduce the risk of infection. These rules will remain in effective until April 13, 2020, subject to change.
- Any resident with signs or symptoms of Coronavirus/COVID-19, including fever of 100 or higher, cough, or difficulty breathing should call the front desk immediately to be evaluated by nursing. Residents should isolate themselves until seen by nursing.
- Any resident contact with a person with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 in the last 14 days, or are under investigation for COVID-19 shall notify the front desk.
- If under “Apartment Restrictions”, a resident must remain in their apartment, absent true medical emergency. Meals, mail, and packages will be delivered to them. When under Apartment Restrictions, residents must remain isolated in their rooms away from other people for the appropriate restriction period. Residents will be placed under “Apartment Restrictions” if they have undiagnosed cause of illness, including fever of 100 or higher, cough, or difficulty breathing. A resident can choose to discharge from the community at any time. Confirmed cases of Coronavirus/COVID-19 will be handled separate from this protocol.
- Residents will be limited to two adult visitors per day. Visitors shall be limited to the resident’s apartment or the dining room during meals. No visitors under the age of 18 will be permitted onsite. This does not apply to underage employees of Arbors (see below). This prohibition does not apply in end of life situations, as determined by Nursing or the Executive Director.
- All visitors, staff, and vendors shall sign in and be screened prior to entry for signs or symptoms of COVID-19, including fever of 100 or higher, cough, or difficulty breathing, or contact with a person with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 in the last 14 days, or are under investigation for COVID-19. Temperature of all visitors, staff, and vendors will be taken with a “no-touch” thermometer. Any staff, contractor or visitor who will not participate in this process will be asked to reschedule their visit after outbreak concerns are reduced.
- All staff shall be screened at the start of every shift to ensure they do not show any symptoms associated with COVID-19, including fever of 100 or higher, or cough/ difficulty breathing not associated with another documented diagnosis.
Please understand these are unprecedented times, requiring unprecedented measures. As news develops, we will reach out. Thank You- Arbors of Hop Brook