Dear Resident or Family Member,
We remain committed to providing updates to our residents, families, and staff at AgeCare. As such, we are providing weekly updates to keep you all informed on what is happening at our community and organization-wide.
These weekly updates will include:
- Information and announcements – what AgeCare is doing at this stage of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Recreation highlights as the need to stay active, intellectually stimulated, and socially connected never ends.
- A weekly shout-out to celebrate the great work and activities happening at our community.
These updates are sent Friday each week. We hope that you find them helpful. Thank you all for your continued support.
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What AgeCare is Doing
As the province continues to re-open and we move into the next phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to share what AgeCare is doing. While our community remains free of any COVID-19 cases, we continue to operate under many of our outbreak protocols to prevent the potential spread of infection. Our goal is to keep our residents safe and our home COVID-19 free.
- Visitation inside our communities remains restricted to one essential visitor only, who is attending to a resident who is dying.
- To ensure residents and family can stay connected during this time, we continue to offer scheduled outdoor in-person and virtual visit sessions. To schedule your next visit, contact our Recreation Manager, Rina Hempel 403-361-8003 firstname.lastname@example.org.
- All staff, residents and essential visitors continue to be screened and have their temperature taken before entering our communities.
- Staff are screened twice per shift: first at a screening station when they enter the building for their shift and at an additional time during their shift the staff member will screen themselves. At all times, staff are required to self-monitor for symptoms. Any staff who have new symptoms will immediately stop their work, report to their supervisor and review symptoms, leave the building if instructed to do so by the supervisor, self-isolate and access the online Alberta Health Services Healthcare Worker Screening Tool. They will not return to work until they are cleared to do so.
- Staff continue to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in accordance with the guidance of Alberta Health Services and the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) and take the appropriate hygiene measures when applying and removing PPE. This includes, but is not limited to, staff wearing masks while providing resident care or in areas where 2-metres physical distance cannot be maintained.
- Long Term-Care and Supportive Living residents are screened for symptoms twice a day, including taking their temperature, and this screening is documented in the resident health record. If the resident is suspected of having new or worsening symptoms, they are put on precautionary contact and droplet isolation, a swab is taken, and the resident’s family is notified. Residents remain on contact and droplet isolation while they have symptoms. Residents on contact and droplet isolation, will be served meals and continue to be provided all the care and support they need in their rooms.
- Enhanced cleaning procedures remain in place, including high touch surfaces (examples: doorknobs, faucets, etc.), at least 3 times per day following our outbreak protocols.
- Recreation activities are ongoing but remain limited to individuals or small groups, including residents and staff, to ensure appropriate physical distancing between participants.
- Additional dining areas are in place to ensure appropriate physical distancing can occur while residents enjoy their meals. Safe food handling and enhanced cleaning protocols continue to be followed.
- As new residents are welcomed into the community or residents return from the hospital, they are put on precautionary isolation until declared clear by Alberta Health.
- If a resident must leave the building for an essential medical appointment that cannot be provided onsite, before booking the appointment a consultation needs to occur with the care team to review options. The care team will provide further directions on how to attend these appointments safely. This includes, but is not limited to, constant masking and hand washing/sanitizing, guidelines on transportation, and screening required upon return.
- Reminder that it is still the recommendation of the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) that residents stay onsite, and wherever possible, appointments with health professionals are done virtually or onsite.
- If a resident leaves for more than 24-hours, is admitted to the hospital, or did not follow physical distancing, hand washing, and other precautions, they will be required to isolate for 14 days, and to swab for COVID-19.
- Education Services provides ongoing training for staff on the appropriate use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), hand hygiene and other health and safety protocols.
- The AgeCare COVID-19 Operations Centre, a cross-disciplinary leadership team, and site leadership continues to meet multiple times per week to discuss COVID-19 updates and take any actions required.
- The AgeCare COVID-19 Operations Centre and site leadership are planning and preparing for a possible second wave of COVID-19, forecasting necessary supplies, staffing needs, and the provision of essential services if/when needed.
The need to stay active, intellectually stimulated, and socially connected never ends – even during these unprecedented times. Our recreation team is working hard to create engaging activities to enrich the mind, body and spirit, while ensuring residents can maintain appropriate physical distancing.
Recreation Highlights of the Week
We want to say a huge thank you to Janlyn, our amazing unit clerk. Throughout these past few months, Janlyn has had a difficult but important role. Despite high demand for supplies across the world, Janlyn was always able to source and order what we needed. Because of Janlyn’s resourcefulness, we were able to continue to provide care seamlessly and safely for residents. We are very grateful she is a member of our team. We could not have gotten through it without you. Thanks, Janlyn!