Author: Steven Woods

Monday 7/27/20

Please be aware that the COVID testing that was originally scheduled for tomorrow Tuesday 7/28/20 will be moved to Thursday 7/30/20 starting at 7:00am.

Unfortunately the swabs that were mailed here have not yet arrived from Dartmouth Hitchcock. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Sincerely, Steve

Wednesday 7/22/20

Hello Everyone!

We are pleased to announce that all results received back from the COVID testing this week so far have been negative. Assuming that they all come back negative we can begin to reopen our operation with many limitations.

We are planning to restart window visits on 7/27 and begin outdoor visits on 8/3, dependent of course on results of testing conducted Monday and Tuesday of this week. We are working on plans to slowly reopen some communal dining (with limitations assuring all residents are 6 feet across) as well. We also are working on restarting some group activities (again with numerous limitations).

Thanks to the Activities Department for bagging up all of the lovely chocolate donated to us by Lindt. Lindt wanted to say thanks to all of the amazing employees here that are so brave and are providing such incredible care to all of our residents and clients.

The next payment for the LTC stipend program from the State is going to occur on a miscellaneous pay run on 7/23. Payment will be made for weeks ending 6/20, 6/27 and 7/4.

PPE Update:

We have a strong amount of PPE at this time. We are always on the look out to build our supplies and be in the best position for the future.

Thanks to everyone for your continued hard work to keep us COVID free and take the very best and safest care of all of our residents and clients.

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Friday 7/17/20

Hello Everyone!

Just a reminder COVID testing continues on Monday July 20th and Tuesday July 21st. Resident testing will be on Monday and staff testing will be on Tuesday. To our valued staff members please make every effort to come to the Hilton and be tested. This is to continue to keep our residents, clients, and staff healthy and safe.

All of the residents/clients who were COVID tested on Monday July 13th have resulted negative. All of the staff results from the Monday COVID testing that we have received have been negative as well.

PPE Update:

Today we received a large amount of PPE from the Emergency Services Unit at the State. Several cases of disposable gowns, masks and gloves were brought to our facility. We continue to monitor our PPE closely.

Rockingham Strong shirts are in! They are being distributed throughout the facility to all staff. Please join us in celebrating our great team on Wednesday 7/22 and Sunday 7/26 by wearing your shirt and dressing down if you would like.

Special thanks to the team of Driscoll 2 who worked tirelessly during the 14-day required quarantine of the unit. It is times like these we realize what a great team we have here!

Have a great weekend!

SIncerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Tuesday 7/14

Hello Everyone!

We completed another round of COVID testing for both our staff and residents. There was a great turnout by staff. We want to take the opportunity to thank all staff for continuing to participate in testing to keep our staff and residents safe.

Going forward it looks like we will have standard testing conducted in the Hilton on Monday and Tuesdays. This will allow staff to better plan for future testing dates.

We participated in a second surprise infection control survey by the State of New Hampshire. We are pleased to announce that we remain in full compliance with infection control policies and procedures. Great job everyone!

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Monday 7/6/20

Hello Everyone,

After conducting surveillance testing we wanted to inform the Rockingham community that it was discovered that we have an asymptomatic COVID positive resident. Immediate infection prevention protocols were followed with additional polices and protocols as guided by the State of New Hampshire Department of Public Health.

Due to this information being so new we will have regular updates as they become available. The leadership team is working diligently and continuing to implement additional infection control strategies to best protect the residents and staff.

The National Guard is here today to continue with staff surveillance testing. To our staff please make every effort to continue to be tested at each testing interval. This testing is critical to capture potential asymptomatic COVID carriers.

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Thursday 7/2/20

Hello Everyone!

Below please find the letter we sent out to families yesterday. Families were notified via email, phone calls, and/or mail. If your contact information has changed please let us know so we can update.

7/1/20

Dear Residents/Family Members/Responsible Parties,

I am writing to provide you an update about Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).   Unfortunately, at this time, we need to inform everyone that our sentinel testing discovered 1 asymptomatic staff member positive for COVID-19.   The staff member is currently self isolating under the direction of the Department of Health and Human Services.  All staff and residents will be retested.  Residents continue to be screened daily by nursing staff as well.

We continue to follow all guidelines from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and due to this positive case we are immediately stopping all visitation (inclusive of window and outdoor visits) effective today.   We understand that you were excited about the outdoor visits starting.  In order to keep our staff and residents safe we cannot begin the visits at this time.  Residents will continue to remain on their units.   We will continue to keep families/residents updated as any new information becomes available.    We continue to work very closely with the Department of Public Health and the Department of Health and Human Services as they continue to guide us on infection prevention measures. 

Our staff continues to do an amazing job.  We are continuing to do screenings on all employees that are coming in for every shift.  We are very lucky to have such a dedicated group of health professionals.   We are working on plans daily to ensure that we are staying abreast of the most current rules and regulations. 

For updated information please visit our Blog.   It is located at:

www.RockinghamCountyLTCnews.org

You will find information regarding COVID operations, PPE supplies, etc.

Thanks for your understanding of all of the inconveniences caused by this serious health concern.  I pray that you and your family stay safe.  Protecting your loved one continues to be our ultimate responsibility.

Sincerely,

Steven Woods

Administrator/Long Term Care Services Director

Due to this change in COVID status, all residents will be tested on Friday 7/3/20. Staff will be tested on Friday and the following Monday 7/6/20. We are requesting that all staff be tested as this is a state recommendation and the best way possible to protect our staff and clients/residents.

At this time the Watertower Cafe remains open for in-house staff for grab and go items only. Both dining areas are now closed and will reopen when safe to do so.

Fit testing for N95 masks continues in the Hilton auditorium for nursing staff. If you have not been fit tested yet, please reach out to Kristen or Martha in Occupational Health. Thank you Kristen for facilitating the fit testing!

Thank you everyone for your positivity during this challenging time.

We wish you a safe and Happy 4th of July!

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Tuesday 6/23/20

Hello Everyone!

We are pleased to announce that our first official round of sentinel Covid testing has been completed. This included many staff members, 10% of assisted living residents and 10% of nursing home residents/clients. We are very happy to report all tests have resulted negative for COVID-19!

Please remember the next round of testing will be 6/25 and 6/26. It will be conducted out back by Tiffany, Lauren, and Meghan. These are the much gentler anterior nasal swabs. Our goal is to have 100% of our staff to participate to meet state recommendations and standards and best protect the clients/residents we care for daily. Please make every effort to have yourself tested on one of these dates.

We are working on an outdoor visitation policy with stringent guidelines set forth by the State of NH. Our goal is to start outdoor visits in the courtyard on Monday July 6th. We will be setting up 6 visitation stations to allow for physical distancing. Policy to be finalized and circulated by the end of this week.

Happy Tuesday!

Steve and Tiffany

Friday 6/19/20

Hello Everyone!

A special thanks to Commissioner St. James for helping to arrange an incredible seacoast EMS parade that we had here yesterday afternoon. There were 16 vehicles in the parade with full lights, sirens and horns blaring. Police vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances, etc. were all involved from many surrounding towns. It was fun for the residents and staff to be reminded how much the community supports us and knows what incredible work is going on to protect all of the residents/clients.

Covid tests keep coming back for assisted living residents, nursing home residents and staff. So far they all remain negative. We continue to thank each of you for your role in assuring that all infection control measures are followed every single day!

As you may have seen on the news, the State is allowing outdoor resident and family visits to start back up. We are working on a plan for this to be able to happen starting Monday July 6. Nursing is developing comprehensive policies for this and the courtyard will be set up to have 6 visiting stations. There are too many rules to mention but they include, multiple screenings of the family and resident, mandatory face masks at all times, only 2 family members for a max 1/2 hour visit, close supervision by the home, no family/resident touching or sharing of food, etc. We are working diligently to strike the balance of helping to reduce resident social isolation while assuring protection from Covid.

PPE Update:

Overall we are doing okay with all PPE. The one exception is gloves. We are working hard to acquire additional boxes of gloves to make sure we have an adequate supply.

Next Employee Testing Date June 25th and 26th:

We are strongly encouraging ALL staff be Covid tested on our next testing date which is Thursday 6/25 and Friday 6/26. Please remember we are asking ALL staff to participate in this testing as it will be offered every 10 days. The state recommends 100% participation from all staff and that is the standard RCRNC is looking to achieve. Tiffany, Meghan, and Lauren will be conducting the testing outside in lieu of the National Guard. The swabbing will be conducted via the anterior nares method which is less invasive and can be done quickly. Please sign-up with Lauren Kosow as soon as possible.

We hope you have a nice weekend. The weather looks amazing. Stay safe and for all the dads out there…”Happy Father’s Day!”

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Thursday 6/11/20

Hello Everyone!

Recently Assisted Living completed sentinel testing of all residents. We are happy to report that Ernest P. Barka remains Covid free! Thank you Lauren for helping to assist the Ernest P. Barka team with their testing.

On Tuesday, June 16th, sentinel testing will continue for both staff and residents/clients at RCRNC. Testing will begin at 11 am. Please remember if you signed up for a testing slot, you must arrive for testing. Our goal is to test 100% of all of our RCRNC staff every 10 days. Staff can show up after 11 am but should be here by 4 pm.

PPE Update

Lauren continues to place orders for PPE from the state emergency supplies. We have been consistently receiving gloves which are always needed due to limited availability.

Lastly, we would like to acknowledge the hard work of the entire team. To the activities team for helping with passing trays and trying to keep the residents entertained as best as they can. To the social services team for assisting with resident visits and providing support to the residents during this difficult time. To the environmental services team for diligently following infection and sanitizing procedures throughout the facility.

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany

Friday 6/5/20

Hello Everyone!

We hope this message finds you all well. Our facility remains Covid free at the time of this message. We continue to thank everyone for their hard work for making this happen!

Next week we will begin staff Covid testing. This is voluntary at this time but highly encouraged. Please see Lauren Kosow to add your name to the list. A team will be coming to Rockingham County to conduct the testing next week. Unfortunately, we are unable to give a date and time as this will be determined by the amount of staff who sign up. We will distribute this information as soon as it becomes available.

Congratulations to everyone on a deficiency free infection control focused survey conducted by the CMS regional in Boston! Rockingham County was found to be in substantial compliance. This is amazing news and speaks volumes to all of your hard work!

PPE update

We continue to receive gloves and hand sanitizer from the state distribution unit. We have also ordered an additional amount of reusable gowns which will be delivered shortly.

Sincerely,

Steve and Tiffany