March 27, 2020- To Family and Visitors
Dear Kirkhaven Families,
We hope this notification finds you in good health. The size and scale of the COVID-19 pandemic is undeniably testing the entire world health community. As this dynamic situation changes at an increasing pace, our emergency plan is evolving based on the status of our resident and staff population and guidance from CDC, NYSDOH and local DOH officials. Our goal is to be as transparent as possible with information while maintaining the privacy rights of all of our residents and staff. With that in mind I share with you the following:
On the evening of March 25, we received positive results for Coronavirus, COVID-19 on one resident who resides on the 4th household. The affected resident and all other residents on the 4th household are in isolation in accordance with CDC and NYSDOH guidelines. The affected resident is in stable condition and in good spirits. All residents residing on the affected household must remain in their rooms to the extent possible. All staff working on the affected household are wearing the recommended personal protective equipment (PPE). We are in the process of conducting contact tracing under the direction of the local health department to determine the source of this case. This process is impacted by the delays in receiving test results (7-10 days) that you are hearing about in the Greater Rochester Community.
As you are aware from our last update, all non-essential visits to the facility have been discontinued. Access is restricted to essential visitors; who must go through the same health screen process as employees. All employees are actively screened immediately upon reporting to work and every (8) eight hours while at work, to include temperature checks. All employees must wear a surgical mask when working on resident households or in other areas where residents reside and when within 6 feet of a resident. Communal dining has been reduced and eliminated to the extent possible on all households. Dining rooms and other communal spaces have been re-arranged in the best effort to promote social distancing. All group internal and external activities have been canceled. Residents are reminded and assisted to practice social distancing and frequent hand hygiene. Residents on the 4th floor have been given a mask and assisted to wear it unless such is not tolerable.
We continue to maintain a person-centered approach to assigning consistent staff to care for residents. Consistent assignment (sometimes called primary or permanent assignment) refers to the same caregivers (RNs, LPNs, C.N.As) consistently caring for the same residents almost every time they are on duty. We also maintain a person-centered approach to care and continue to monitor our entire resident population closely (health screens are done on all residents at least every 8 hours) for Vital Signs (VS) and any signs/ symptoms of respiratory illnesses that may arise. Any resident who exhibits symptoms suspect of COVID-19 will be seen by our medical team and reported to NYSDOH, per their guidelines. We will continue to notify resident representatives of resident health changes in accordance with our notification of status change policy.
We understand this is unsettling news and want to make you aware of opportunities we have in place to assist with your connection to your loved one during this difficult time. In lieu of visits, we are offering alternative means of communication for people who would otherwise visit, such as virtual communications (phone, video-communications). Please reach out to your primary Social Worker or Nurse Manager if you’re interested in scheduling a tele-visit. Our Social Workers and Life Enrichment staff continue to provide supportive visits and reassurance to all of our residents. We are attempting to do whatever 1:1 activities we can to raise the spirits of the residents and maintain as much normalcy as possible under these trying circumstances.
We are committed to keeping you informed and want to reassure you we are taking every necessary, mandated and precautionary action to prevent/reduce the spread of COVID-19 to minimize the risk to our residents and staff.
Please stay home, be safe and thank you for your understanding and support.
~Anne Gallese, CEO/Administrator