COVID-19 Resident and Family Information

03/16/2020
Third Written Update

To Our Residents & Family Members:

We are continuing our efforts to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). You are already aware that we have taken steps to prevent the spread, including restricting visitors We know this can create some inconvenience for you, and we thank you for your diligence and participation in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

The situation regarding COVID-19 is still evolving worldwide and can change rapidly, we continue to receive new information and instructions from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), and other experts in the health and human services field, we are implementing some more key strategies in our prevention efforts:

  • Restricting Visits: We are temporarily restricting entry only to workers who are essential to resident care and services. We are monitoring staff, including their temperatures, prior to the start of their shift. Immediate family members who need to visit for critical and time sensitive reasons, such as end of life visits, will be screened in the same manner and asked to limit the number to two family members. The visitation will take place in the resident’s room and requires scheduling and coordination with facility representative prior to arrival.

We have now been directed by CMS to eliminate group activities and communal meals.  We have made arrangements for room service to all our residents.

  • Virtual Visits: All facilities now have iPads for virtual visits.  Additionally, we are working to provide individual activity options as well as one on one visits with staff members.  Please contact the local facility to coordinate virtual visits.

Thank you, once again for your support with these efforts. We know these limitations are difficult for you. We continue to receive positive comments and feedback from residents and family members. These observations are appreciated, and we have been sharing them with our frontline staff. Please continue to reach out to us.

Sincerely,

The Dixon Family

1. Coronavirus is a particular challenge for elderly people who are medically compromised, such as residents of skilled nursing centers, because they have less ability to fight off the infection.

2. People infected with COVID-19 often don’t have symptoms for up to two weeks, so they go about their normal lives and come into contact with many other people.

3. It is impossible to know if a person who enters a SNF with no symptoms is carrying coronavirus unless they happen to know that they have had contact with someone else who has it.

4. According to the Director of Health, Dr. Acton, there likely are thousands of individuals in communities across Ohio who have coronavirus and do not know it, with thousands of others having daily contact with them.

5. To protect the especially vulnerable people in skilled nursing centers and other health care facilities, Dr. Acton issued orders restricting visitors. The goal was to reduce the risk of the disease entering the building, but there is no way to eliminate the risk entirely.

6. Before the orders, which just came out a week ago, SNFs had no right to block visitors to residents. In fact, aside from the orders, they would have a legal right to unrestricted visitation.

7. Skilled nursing centers actively screen everyone who comes into the building to work or on official business for any indications that they might have coronavirus: fever; respiratory symptoms; and possible exposure to someone who is infected.

8. Skilled centers also use infection control procedures for patients who are have respiratory symptoms, such as keeping them isolated from other patients and wearing masks, gowns, and gloves when caring for them.

9. There is limited availability of testing for COVID-19, so it is only permitted when a person is seriously ill and their doctor orders the test. Wide-scale testing of well people is not allowed.

10. Because people without symptoms can transmit the disease, despite taking all the precautions possible, there often is no way to know how a person in a skilled center (or in the community) originally contracted it.

Additional Links for More Information:
www.cdc.gov/covid19
coronavirus.ohio.gov