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Need to Know Guidance During Covid

 

August 31, 2020

Dear Family and Friends,

I hope this finds you all well in these difficult times.  With the pandemic still holding strong, our day-to-day operations continue to be challenging.  We have had to re-think the way we do many things, from dining to activities, beautician services and family visits; just to name a few.   We are not only monitoring our residents daily for signs and symptoms of this virus, but our staff as well.  As many of you may already be aware, there was a shortage of health care workers before the pandemic hit.  That has not changed.  The staff in all of our buildings have really stepped up to the challenge to cover open shifts, to cover for co-workers out with symptoms, to cover for co-workers needing to quarantine due to a spouse or other family member coming into contact with a positive case.  I don’t know how many of you have worn a surgical mask for an eight-hour period, but I can tell you it is not comfortable.  Our staff have been working tirelessly to care for our residents and I applaud their efforts. 

The guidance from the CDC, Public Health and the Wisconsin Bureau of Assisted Living changes on almost a daily basis.  Sometimes the guidance conflicts between these entities, and we have to navigate through it which is not always an easy task.  While we are licensed under the state of Wisconsin, our local Walworth County Public Health Department is the final authority on certain practices.  I am in constant contact with them.  All managers also listen to a weekly webinar hosted by the Bureau of Assisted Living and has an MD, ombudsman, the Director of the Bureau and several RNs in attendance to talk about new information, guidance and to answer any questions we have. 

OUTDOOR VISITS

At the present time we are allowing outdoor visits only.  We have decided that we will no longer have set days and time periods, but would ask that you call and schedule an appointment.  Please be mindful that staff is quite busy around mealtimes (between 11:30am to 1pm and then again from 4:30pm to 6pm).  Please schedule a visitation time with the Resident Service Manager (Marcia at the Terrace, Emily at the Gardens, and Shar or Ammie at the Village).  Staff will be taking your temperature and having you fill out a Visitor form.  No physical contact should occur during the visit and both the visitor and the resident should have a face covering on and maintain social distancing during the entire visit.  

SUPPLY DROP OFF

Supplies can be dropped off at any time now.  We ask that you call ahead to give the staff some notice.  If the items are non-perishable, please label the bags and leave in the lobby entryway so staff can pick up at their leisure. 

APPOINTMENTS/OUTINGS

Residents may attend essential appointments (doctors, dentist, etc).  If you are going to be transporting them, please be sure you are symptom-free and wearing a mask during transport and while with them.  The Bureau of Assisted Living is strongly discouraging outings that are NOT essential (beauty shop, lunch, shopping); however, residents maintain their rights and may choose to do what they please.  If residents and families choose to go on non-essential outings, we ask that a face covering is worn at all times and that hand washing and hand sanitizing is done prior to returning to the facility.  Please be aware that if a resident is hospitalized overnight or is out overnight for any other reason they will need to quarantine for 14 days.  Any resident who tests positive for COVID-19 puts the entire building in an outbreak status and ALL residents must then quarantine for 28 days (two incubation periods). 

I want to express my sincere appreciation for all the wonderful treats, pizza parties, gift cards and other goodies that we have received from you!  That means a lot to the staff. Thanks for your generosity and kind words!

As always, the staff will contact you if your loved one is in need of supplies, medication, etc.  They will also notify you of changes in physical or cognitive status or other health emergencies.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact your Service Manager.  Please be aware that due to the managers being on call 24/7 they may take a day off during the week.  If you have left a message, please be patient for their return call.  If it is more urgent you may contact me.  We will continue to make you aware of any changes.

Sincerely,
Christina Kiesel, Director