October 9, 2020
I am pleased to provide good news in this update. We received the results from the October 5th and 6th testing for all staff. All staff are negative for COVID-19. No one has any COVID-19 related symptoms and no one has COVID-19.
Here is the cumulative report of Pickersgill’s experience with the COVID-19 virus since April 1, when we were informed of our first positive resident, including today’s update. Since we are testing staff weekly and testing residents when warranted, I am only including positive cases in the cumulative report:
- One assisted living resident tested positive for the virus.
- One nursing home resident tested positive for the virus.
- Eight staff tested positive for the virus.
Relaxation of Restrictions – Inside Visitation
I spoke with Tricia Selko today and she tells me that inside visitation is going well and the number of visitors is increasing. Thank you for following our guidelines. In my update last week, I neglected to mention that we are not allowing pets in the building. So please do not bring a pet in when you visit. Also, each visitor must be at least 5 years old and able to wear a face mask. Since we are now allowing visitors to return to the building, the Activities Department will be stopping regular Skype/FaceTime calls. We understand these platforms have become routine for many, and would encourage you to talk with your resident about purchasing a tablet or other device if this is something they would like to continue to enjoy independently. Skype/FaceTime calls are still available for families that live out of town. Please contact Melissa Miller, Director of Activities, about scheduling a call.
Flu Shots Starting
The nursing staff will start administering flu shots next week. We are strongly encouraging all residents to be vaccinated since this fall and winter there is the potential to be exposed to both the flu and COVID. They should at least be protected from getting the flu.
Mitigating Actions to Prevent or Reduce Risk
As you know, and I have reported previously, we have taken many mitigating actions to prevent or reduce the risk of transmission of the virus since the public health emergency was instituted. I provide this section with every update in compliance with Federal regulations. Some of the actions we have taken in the past have ended as we have started to relax restrictions. However, we will re-institute these strict restrictions if we have an outbreak. We continue to encourage our residents to wear face masks when they are not in their room and practice social distancing. We are checking all assisted living and nursing home residents’ temperature and oxygen levels daily. We screen daily all healthcare staff and all employees who enter the building according to CDC guidelines; this includes taking their temperature upon entry. We require all employees to wear a face mask and other appropriate Personal Protective Equipment, as necessary, when interacting with or caring for a resident.
We are following CDC, CMS, and Maryland Dept. of Health guidelines and testing any resident or employee who states that they have a respiratory symptom that could be a symptom of COVID-19. In addition, we are requiring that a resident is tested before being readmitted to the community from a hospital or other nursing home. However, many symptoms of COVID-19 are also symptoms of other respiratory illnesses. So, testing does not automatically mean that the individual has the disease. If an assisted living or nursing home resident has symptoms and is being tested, they are under strict isolation in their room. An isolation cart is outside their room and any staff who enter the room wear a face mask, face shield, gloves and gown. The resident also wears a face mask when an employee is in the room. This procedure continues until the test results are negative and the resident no longer has symptoms. Employees who have symptoms are excused from work until their test results are negative or they no longer have symptoms.
We are posting this same information on our website, www.pickersgillretirement.org on the News page. If there is someone with whom you would like to share this information, please have them visit our website.
Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns about this information. Thank you.