This pandemic is affecting all facets of our lives including how we operate as senior housing providers. We are in a unique environment where everyone associated with the long-term care industry is working to manage this situation as best we can for resident safety, family interaction and the financial impacts on everyone.
As you are aware, our country, state and county are working toward relaxing the restrictions that have been used to help control the spread of COVID-19. These efforts are in flux presently and there are intermediate steps in this process that are being discussed by local counties and states to start allowing some types of visitation by families and our residents. Most of these require adherence to social distancing and use of Personal Protective Equipment during visits. We understand how difficult the COVID-19 limitations have been on our residents and those who love them and are making plans that will move in this direction once everyone is comfortable in doing so.
We must honor other agencies, specifically those who hold our license and we are obligated to follow their guidance as well during the lessening of current restrictions. Where possible, and in consultation with licensing agencies, we will begin to schedule outside visits with family members.
In areas that are allowing this restricted visitation, we are making plans to make sure that this procedure can be done in as positive a way as needed for everyone. Visits will be scheduled and require social distancing and the wearing of face masks. We ask your patience with us as we move through the next phase of ‘Opening of America’ and to help us conform to the guidance that our revised visitation protocols have and which our license is predicated on.
We would love nothing more than to allow visitation freely in our community but that won’t be possible until we have approvals. For now, limited visitation procedures are being finalized. We will keep you informed as our restrictions are relaxed and are looking forward to seeing you once again visiting within our community.
How Highland Estates is responding to the COVID-19 virus
Updated on 2021-01-14 11:30:48 -0800
We understand the concerns you and your family are experiencing with the world-wide COVID-19 health crisis – especially as you have a loved one living in our care. The pandemic's potential impact on the elderly population is of utmost concern to every one of us at Highland Estates. Everything we do is focused on protecting your loved one's health and safety. That's why we have enacted additional preventive measures in our communities beyond our historically stringent standards.
One preventative measure enacted to help protect our residents against the spread of COVID-19 is a visitation restriction effective immediately. We will continue to closely monitor the recommendations followed by state, local, and federal agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Our Current Procedures for Visitors
Visitation will be limited to those who are visiting a loved one who is receiving end-of-life care, those who are visiting a loved one whose visits are essential for the individual's emotional well-being and care, or those who are designated as "essential personal," including those who are medically or operationally necessary. This includes but is not limited to community staff, outside medical personal, and emergency response personnel.
All visitors entering our community will be screened upon entry for symptoms of COVID-19 such as a respiratory infection that includes fever, cough, shortness of breath or sore throat, if there has been any contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 or under investigation within the last 14 days, or any international travel within the last 14 days to countries with sustained community transmission.
Compassionate Care Visitor Program
Although social distancing and physical separation are still important to keep our residents safe, we are taking steps to combat the unintended consequences of prolonged social isolation and to maintain overall health and wellbeing. We are pleased to announce the planned implementation of a new Compassionate Care Visit program.
This program is established in coordination with local, state and regulatory guidelines for visitor restrictions which may allow certain visitors for residents from outside our community, necessary for those residents with Hospice services, or essential for the wellbeing or psychosocial support of residents as a result of social isolation related to COVID-19. Listed below are some of the guidance criteria we will use:
Compassionate Care Visits shall schedule appointments, a minimum of 24-hours in advance, during hours designated by the Executive Director/Designee and visits are limited to 10% of the total community current occupancy.
What We're Doing
Every year, flu season always triggers a heightened vigilance toward our residents' health and our operational oversight. Because of this new virus, we have instituted a more extensive range of additional procedures and practices to help ensure the well-being of our residents and employees. These include:
Re-educating our staff on best infection control practices in managing daily tasks throughout our community – i.e., handwashing, increasing the frequency of disinfecting all surfaces, tools and utensils, especially high-touch surfaces
Screening staff upon arrival for COVID-19 symptoms daily and direct any staff who may be sick to stay home
Posting updated signage about infection control protocol throughout communities
Increasing the monitoring of the resident's health status
Conferring with healthcare partners and providers to address unique care needs and monitoring
Suspending communal dining and delivering meals to residents' rooms.
Monitoring closely with the CDC, state and local health department and implementing additional measures and protocols specific to limiting the spread of COVID-19
Encouraging opportunities for residents to connect with families through video and other digital technologies
Suspending large group activities and outings
Providing regular updates to residents and families
This is a rapidly changing situation, so we are continually monitoring communications from the CDC, the World Health Organization, and state departments of public health. We will adjust our operations, as appropriate and mandated, in this rapidly changing environment.
If you are feeling ill and are unsure if you have COVID-19, please visit the CDC's "What To Do if You Are Sick" website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html.
For the latest information that AHCA/NCAL has to share about COVID-19, visit https://www.ahcancal.org/Survey-Regulatory-Legal/Emergency-Preparedness/pages/coronavirus.aspx.
Please don't hesitate to email us at email@example.com with any questions or concerns. Thank you for placing your trust in us to care for your loved one. We are here for your loved one, and we are here for you.