Dear Residents, Families, and Sponsors,
Let me begin by first thanking you for all your understanding and cooperation during this national pandemic. COVID-19 has reordered all our life activities, priorities, and even our individual freedoms. It has compelled us as an organization to make operational decisions that would never otherwise need to be implemented and compelled many of you to conform to restrictions you would have previously considered intrusive.
Community Senior Life (CSL) continues to expect compliance from our employees on infection control and sanitation policies at work and social distancing, small group exposure, and hygiene mandates in their personal lives, while at the same time communicating with our residents and families/sponsors the reasonings and data behind the updates, announcements, and restrictions directed upon us by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), State, and Federal Agencies. Because we take these directives and mandates so seriously, and because we are taking decisive action in our communities to implement controls, CSL has zero confirmed coronavirus cases at any of our senior living communities at this time.
As CSL reacts to these guidelines and mandates, we must prepare for what may happen, not necessarily what will happen. We hope what may happen is far worse than what will happen, but we are not in a position to gamble on hope. We look at this situation in light of two absolutes. One, risks we don’t have to take, and two, risks we must take. Risks we don’t have to take would include allowing residents to leave the campus for non-emergent reasons and have guests into their units or common areas. Risks we are forced to take include allowing staff to leave the campus to return home to their families each night and re-enter the community the following morning. This risk, the same risk taken by every like-kind community, is a risk we must allow if we are to provide care and services to our residents during this health crisis.
Since March 10th, we have been implementing policies, processes, and protocols to help reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus (COVID-19) into our senior living communities. Since we began, we have seen additional restrictions placed by local and state governments with the President of the United States extending the distancing guidelines to April 30th. These orders have not been taken lightly, and we cannot say it enough – Thank you. Thank you for your cooperation and patience.
We understand the most affected are those over 65 years of age and those with pre-existing conditions. These two qualifying factors pretty much cover every resident we have in our communities. While the virus spreads, we are taking more precautions to keep our residents safe.
Beginning April 1, 2020, the following will be implemented:
NO VISITOR POLICY WILL BE STRICTLY ENFORCED. A visitor is someone who does not reside or work at a CSL Community. Families are welcome to drop supplies off at the main entrance. We can arrange “window chats,” FaceTime, or Skype if you would like to see or talk with your loved one, but only under emergency health or medical need will visitors be allowed in the building. Those who violate this policy will, by order, be reported to the State Health Department, and local authorities will be called. We have put processes in place if residents need supplies or groceries. We have arranged Teladoc services with our physicians, and we have canceled all non-essential appointments per the local and state authorities.
Assisted Living and Memory Care Residents are not allowed to leave and return unless the reason for leaving is emergent or essential medical reason. We have arranged alternative methods to meet residents’ needs. For the safety of all residents who reside in our communities, we will be following The President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America. If a resident chooses to leave the community for non-essential or non-emergency reasons, they will not be allowed to re-enter the community. If this occurs, the resident will continue to be responsible for the payment of their rent as long as their personal belongings remain in the unit. If the resident chooses to move out, a 30-day notice is still required per their Admission Agreement, and staff members will pack up and move their belongings outside of building to a pre-arranged location where the resident or his/her family can pick up the belongings.
Testing – If you feel you have symptoms (elevated temperature, cough, or shortness of breath), please reach out to our staff. We will contact your healthcare provider for testing protocols and locations for testing. We ask that you have a family member take you if a test cannot be performed on-site. We will not provide transportation for COVID-19 testing only because we do not want to expose other residents and staff to the possible transmission of the virus. If you do not have transportation available, we will help arrange a taxi or a ride-booking service like Uber or Lyft.
If you have symptoms but have not tested or are awaiting results – We ask that for the safety of all our residents and staff, you notify the Executive Director at your community if you show signs related to COVID-19. Upon notification, housekeeping services will be suspended until results are confirmed as negative. All medical visits and necessary treatments will, of course, be allowed, and all meal service to your room continued. Critical unit maintenance needs will be serviced as needed. Quarantine conditions will be observed until you are transferred to a hospital or home or until you are cleared by a physician.
If you test positive for COVID-19 – We ask that for the safety of all our residents and staff, you notify the Executive Director at your community if you test positive for COVID-19. Your personal information will not be shared with others, but we are obligated in these times to notify our residents and staff if a confirmed case is present on our campus.
- If you are in a hospital, you will remain there until discharge. If you are discharged and continue to have the virus, we ask that you stay with family until cleared by a physician to protect the well-being of the other residents in your community.
- If you are in your apartment, and cannot move in with family, procedures for quarantine will take place in your apartment until such time as you are cleared by a physician.
Meal delivery – If you have tested positive for COVID-19 and must be quarantined in your apartment, meal delivery will continue following our quarantine policies in place. Meals will be served in disposable containers.
Despite federal and state restrictions, we are doing our best to continue services with as much normalcy as possible. We care about the safety of everyone who calls their Community Senior Life community “home.” Together we can help prevent the spread of this unprecedented virus and soon be on our way to enjoying the amenities and activities you love.
We strongly encourage you to follow all CDC recommendations and to practice social distancing. For continued CSL updates, you can subscribe to our blog at blog.communityseniorlife.org and find us on Facebook by searching Community Senior Life.
If you have any questions, please contact your Executive Director. Again, for your patience and cooperation at this time, thank you.