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Policy and Procedures: Visitation for Personal Care

Purpose:

The purpose of this policy is to ensure the highest level of protection for our residents during COVID-19 Pandemic.  Our elderly population are at the highest risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

Policy:

The facility will allow visitation following the guidelines from CDC, Department of Human Services, Pennsylvania Department of Health and County Health Department in order to maintain the safety of the residents and staff that work in the facility during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Procedure:

1. The facility will closely monitor and adjust this policy per CDC, DOHS and Pennsylvania Department of Health along with County Health Department.

2.  This policy may also be adjusted if there is an increase in positive COVID-19 Cases within this community/facility or directed by Governor

3. The Executive Director and Administrator will consult with the Medical Director Medical staff and local hospitals if there is a change in the community or facility with regard to COVID-19.

4. Window and Facetime visits can continue.

5. Families that wish to have an in-person visit with their family member will be by appointment only.  Family members will be asked screening questions at the time appointments are made.

6. All scheduled appointments will be outside in a designated area for PC visits.

7. All visitors/residents are required to wear a mask during the entire visit.

8. Visitors under the age of 15 will not be permitted.

9. Residents may only have two visitors at one time.

10. Visits will be limited to 30 minutes and will take place outside of PC in designated area.

11. Residents and families will be asked to limit visits to twice per week in order to allow all residents the opportunity to have a visit with their family.

12. Visitors will not be permitted on the Personal Care Unit, except in the case of compassionate visitation in end of life situations.

13. In the event of inclement weather the visit will be cancelled.  Inclement weather will include snow, rain and temperatures that rise above 90 degrees or fall below 50 degrees.

14. Upon arrival to the community visitors will enter through the main entrance.

15. Upon entering the main entrance the visitor must wash hands at hand washing station.  All visitors will be screened by having their temperature taken, all visitors must sign in and answer all required questions.

16. Visitors will not be permitted for the following reasons:

       a. Temperature above 99

       b. Travel to an area that is of high risk within the last 21 days i.e. a country or a state that is experiencing a high volume of community spread.

       c.  Showing symptoms of COVID-19 i.e. shortness of breath, cough, sore throat, GI symptoms, lack of smell or taste, general malaise etc.

17. Once the screening process is completed the visitors will be advise of the designated area.

18. Once visitors are located in designated area they can call the unit to advise staff to bring resident outside for their visit.

19. To maintain social distancing we are only permitted to have one family at a time.  Please keep others in mind.

20. During visit the resident and visitors must remain 6 feet apart in order to maintain social distancing.

21. During the visit if assistant is needed for our residents, visitors must call the unit and make staff aware.  Staff will also ensure that all safety measures are being followed. 

22.  After the visit (scheduled visiting time) staff will come outside to escort our resident back inside. 

23. Due to scheduling, if visitors are late for their scheduled visiting time, their time may not be extended to meet the 30 minutes of visitation.

24. The chairs used during the visit will be sanitized by staff before the next visitation.          

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Gloria Little

Hi, my name is Gloria. My mom, Joan, is a resident of Wesley Burholme. I am very pleased knowing that my mother is safe at Wesley. She gets her medications on time, and she has her lunches in the dining hall which she tells me she likes going to. The nurses are there to give her help when she needs it. Mom gets to see a doctor once a month and a podiatrist, also. She enjoys the activities such as trivia and whatever else they have that day. Our initial experience of the Wesley community was with Jennifer Anderson who helped us so much getting mom into Wesley Burholme during the COVID-19 epidemic. Her help was very much appreciated. Bottom line: Wesley is a safe, caring facility for seniors which I very much recommend!

Gloria Little
Wesley Enhanced Living Burholme
Google

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Executive Director: Weekly COVID-19 Update July 30, 2020

Dear Residents, Families and Employees:

Barring any changes in the city or state, and we remain where we are in the partial green phase, the plan I am presenting today will take effect as we invite visitors into the community.  At this time, we are planning our re-opening to visitors to begin on Monday, August 10.  Please note, there will be a conference call with the PDPH on Friday, July 31, and pending the outcome of that call, the August 10 date may need to change.  Rest assured I will update you with changes.

It is understandable that everyone is anxious to get on the calendar for a visit, and there is no way that everyone can be first.  In order to maintain some semblance of organization and sanity for our wonderful front desk co-workers, we have concluded that we are going to call every resident’s family to set up the initial visits, going in room order, 101A, 101B, 201A, 201B, etc. and by floor, i.e. Monday will be HC1, Tuesday will be R Building in PC, Wednesday will be HC2, and so forth.  The schedule will account for 20 residents each Monday, Wednesday and Friday in the health center and 20 residents each Tuesday and Thursday in personal care to have two visitors during the scheduled visit.  Between August 10 and 21 every one of our residents in health and personal care will have been able to receive visitors for the first time since mid-March.  After that first week of visitors, we will provide further information on how appointments for visits will be made as we move forward.  At this time, we do know that we will only be scheduling visits one time per month due to increases in positive COVID-19 tests in the region and our need to assess what may (or may not) occur after each “round” of visits.   

I have attached an updated copy of the re-opening plan that includes the visiting process.  Staff will be available to assist you through every step of the process.  Please read this document carefully and be prepared to cooperate with all staff in complying with the parameters we have set.  I appreciate this may be very difficult and the parameters may be stringent, especially after a prolonged absence from loved ones, but it is imperative for everyone’s safety that the process is adhered to without exception. 

It is anticipated that we will follow a similar process when we invite independent living families back to the community for visits.  Please appreciate that we want to limit all visitors’ access to the full community due to the additional exposure, cleaning and sanitizing that will be required in public areas, elevators, etc. 

We are all thankful for your patience, understanding and support throughout this pandemic.  Your continued patience and understanding will be appreciated as we explore this new way to visit.  This will be a different way to plan a visit, but we do believe the plan is equitable to all families and will work. 

Please do not hesitate to contact us with your questions or concerns.  You can send me an email directly at the address herein.  

RE-OPENING VISITING FOR THE HEALTH CENTER AND PERSONAL CARE

  1. Re-opening for visitors scheduled for Monday, August 10, 2020.
  2. ALL visits will be by appointment only.  No walk-in visits will be allowed.
  3. Health Center visits will be conducted on Monday, Wednesday and Friday only.
  4. Personal Care visits will be conducted on Tuesday and Thursday only.
  5. Times available for visits will be:  10AM, 11AM, 1:30PM, 2:30PM and 3:30PM
  6. *The staff at WEL Pennypack Park will call all families (beginning with power of attorney/responsible person) by order of room number, splitting the floors evenly, to schedule appointments for the visits.* 
  7. Appointments will only be booked for one visit per month on dates to be determined.
  8. Visits are limited to 45 minutes to allow for sanitizing between visiting residents and families.
  9. If you are late for your scheduled visit, your visiting time will not be extended to compensate for lateness. 
  10. Only four residents will receive visitors per hour.
  11. Limit two visitors per family.  No children under 16 years of age.
  12. ALL visits will take place in the Fireside Dining Room under staff supervision. 
  13. Visits must be conducted with 6’ social distancing maintained, face masks must be on covering both the nose and mouth by resident and visitor.  No shirts pulled up to cover the face or other make-shift face coverings will be accepted.  VISITORS MUST PROVIDE THEIR OWN MASKS.
  14. New admissions will not be permitted to have visitors until two negative COVID-19 tests are returned or 14 days pass, whichever occurs first.
  15. If one new case of COVID-19 develops in the health center or personal care, visits must immediately stop, per CDC and Department of Health guidelines.
  16. Health center and personal care residents may not leave the community with family for visits.
  17. No visitors will be permitted who live in any of the states that are experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases or “hot spots”.
  18. All visitors must be screened.
  19. Visitors will be escorted to the Fireside Dining Room and may not leave that location. 
  20. No visitors are permitted in the health center or in personal care.  Exceptions for health center visits will be based on the clinical needs of each resident and their ability to get out of bed for visits.
  21. Any visitor who refuses to be screened or adheres to universal masking or social distancing will be prohibited from entering the community.
  22. No visitors will be given access before the appointment time.  Visitors will not be permitted to wait in the vestibule or lobby.  PLEASE, wait in your car.
  23. No beverages or snacks will be permitted during the visit.

VISITING PROCESS

  1. Receptionist will make all visitor appointments
    • Limit visitors to schedule as described in the re-opening plan
    • Obtain all contact information for each visitor coming in the appointed time slot (name, address and phone number they can be reached on)
    • Obtain make, model and color of the car that the visitor will be arriving in
  2. Visitors will arrive no earlier than 15 minutes prior to their visit appointment and park in one of the four (4) designated parking spots for visitors at the main entrance
  3. Assigned Unit Clerk will escort visitors for the appointed hour from their vehicles to the vestibule, maintaining social distancing while waiting to enter the community
    • Ensure face mask is on and properly donned covering the nose and mouth
    • Monitor each visitor’s use of the hand sanitizer and proper use of hand sanitizer
  4. Receptionist/security will screen all resident visitors to ensure they are on the appointment schedule (process to become electronic upon receipt of equipment)
    • Obtain temperature
    • Review questions
  5. Unit Clerk will escort the visitor group to the Fireside Dining Room to assigned table to begin their visit
    • C.N.A. will escort residents to the Fireside Dining Room, with the goal to have resident’s present prior to arrival of guests
  6. Unit Clerk will monitor all parties throughout the visit to ensure social distancing, continued use of universal masking, no eating or drinking is taking place and precautions are maintained
  7. Unit Clerk will alert visitors and residents when 5 minutes of visiting time remain
  8. Unit Clerk will escort all visitors from the Fireside Dining Room to the exit and hand them off to the receptionist
  9. Receptionist will ensure all visitors sign out and sanitize their hands prior to leaving the community

SUBJECT TO CHANGE

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CEO Jeff Petty: COVID-19 Update: 7-24-2020

Dear Residents, Family Members, and Employees,

I hope you all are doing well.  I would like to take this opportunity to provide an update of what is happening at all WEL communities and levels of care as it relates to COVID-19.

Cases:

Over the past 6-8 weeks, I’m happy to report that positive cases have essentially disappeared throughout all of our communities, and we continue to have no cases in staff or residents at Burholme or Upper Moreland.   

It is clear that the virtual elimination of the virus in WEL communities tracks with and is a direct result of our ability to obtain the personal protective equipment that we so desperately needed in early April but could not get. Once the supply of this precious equipment was shared to providers other than hospitals, new cases per week in WEL facilities fell from a peak of 35 to single digits in less than a month and effectively stopped altogether within a few weeks after that.

Testing:

We have completed the comprehensive testing as required by the Pennsylvania Department of Health for all skilled nursing care employees and residents. We identified only one new employee case at Stapeley, and two new employee cases at Pennypack Park, one of which was asymptomatic and one has not worked since late June.  As expected and predicted, these results were not helpful - and the delay in obtaining the results, which is increasing, makes these tests a useless exercise.

Nonetheless, we will test all personal care residents and employees as mandated by Pennsylvania by the required 8/31 deadline.

It is our hope soon to be able to do onsite testing with immediate results, which would be truly effective in helping to control new cases.

Precautions:

Thank you for your vigilance in following all safety protocols and acting responsibly in order to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 throughout our communities.  Please continue to do your part to follow guidelines with regard to masks anytime out in the public, including in the common areas of your WEL community. Proper social distancing and handwashing/sanitizing is everyone’s ongoing responsibility. 

I implore everyone to continue to make wise choices when not in our communities, as to not increase your chance for transmission to your fellow residents and/or employees.  Travel and summer vacations are a source of concern;  if you travel to locations outside of PA that are considered “hot spots,” please follow self-quarantine precautions upon your return. 

Reopening:

As Pennsylvania transitions through the colored phases identified by Governor Wolf, each WEL community is following the guidance of their specific county.  At present, Doylestown, Main Line and Upper Moreland have begun slowly reopening and are in various stages of allowing visitors into the buildings, or at least have plans in place to do so for independent living and personal care residents.  Philadelphia is operating under a modified green phase, and therefore our Pennypack Park, Stapeley, and Burholme communities are proceeding more cautiously to adhere to the county guidelines. Please check with your community Executive Director for specifics.  Although we are anxious to welcome visitors back into all of our buildings in all levels of care, CMS has mandated that no skilled nursing visits are permissible until 28 days after a county has been transitioned into the Green phase. 

We are concerned that as the surrounding communities begin to open and our residents and employees are increasingly out in those communities, and as we begin to welcome visitors back into the communities, to open dining rooms and restart activities and events, this increases the risk that we will see residents and employees become infected.  Please share our concern on this potential and help us minimize this risk.

It’s important for me to acknowledge once again my gratitude toward all WEL employees over the past several months, you’ve shown strength and perseverance through this most difficult period.  Additionally I want to again recognize our residents and family members for their continuing patience and support during these times – thank you for the trust you place in us.

Please stay well.

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Contact Information

Senior Living Inquiries:
877-U-AGE-WEL
Employment Inquiries:
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Corporate Office Phone:
215-354-0565
Corporate Office Fax:
215-354-1435
Reporter Inquiries: 
Colleen Scott, 856-242-9200

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