It’s been another turnabout week for us here on campus. On Thursday, German Centre declared itself COVID-19-free when the last test-positive resident was removed from isolation protocols after 14 symptom-free days. We hope this change in status means that we have moved past the worst of the epidemic and that the painstaking work of our staff and residents has had an effect on bending the curve. What it does not mean, however, is that we are back to “normal.”
Due to the highly contagious nature of this virus and the vulnerability of our population, restrictions remain in place throughout the campus. We continue to screen staff and outside providers when they enter our buildings. Facemask use is required by staff at all times. Resident mobility on the units remains restricted. The Activities Department, however, is once again offering modified activities such as bingo, crafts, and music in the hallway outside resident rooms. Residents are grateful for and delighted by these diversions.
Unfortunately, one resident of Edelweiss Village, our assisted living residence, recently tested positive for the virus during a hospital visit unrelated to COVID-19. Edelweiss Village residents and families were notified immediately and reminded to be vigilant about precautions, including shelter at home, wearing a facemask at all times when interacting with others, maintaining social distance of six feet and rigorous handwashing.
Our staff have been a bright spot throughout this pandemic. While there is no substitute for family and friends, residents’ psychosocial needs have been nurtured by a staff that are caring and compassionate. Whether it’s a shoulder to lean on or a comforting touch when it’s most needed, they embody the very notion of the word caregiver.
For these caregivers, however, the balance between work and home life can be stressful in good times, let alone during a crisis. We are grateful to Mass. General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital for offering virtual support groups for staff from local skilled nursing facilities. And, we are humbled, gratified and deeply thankful for the outpouring of support – in the form of notes and food – from families of our residents. Their concern for those who are surrogates in their absence is heartwarming.
We eagerly, albeit guardedly, await the resumption of face-to-face visits on our campus. We thank families for their tremendous patience. And we ask that you continue to be creative in finding alternative ways to reach out to your loved one as we await word from regulatory agencies on when the restrictions will be lifted.
Be well and stay healthy,
Michael B. Lincoln
Chief Executive Officer
Download the Update: May 22 Update