Masonicare Preparedness

Posted on Apr 03, 2020

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UPDATED 4/3/2020:

Yesterday we learned that a resident of Assisted Living (Pond Ridge) at Masonicare at Ashlar Village tested positive for COVID-19. The resident was admitted to a local hospital and remains in the hospital where they are being treated for the symptoms associated with the virus.

While this is our second positive case on our Wallingford campus, it is important to note that they are separate and isolated occurrences, as the two residents who tested positive have no connection to one another, and live in separate areas of our residential community. As a result, there was no cross over of staff or complementary services. With that said, our restrictions and precautionary measures remain in effect as we work to maintain the health and safety or our residents and staff. 

Our thoughts are with both of our residents and their families – as well as all those we care for. We understand this is a difficult time for all and we want you to know that we are doing everything in our power to provide a safe environment.

We want to express our gratitude to our frontline staff for their unwavering commitment to the health of all our residents.

As always, we will continue to update you as information becomes available.


UPDATED 3/28/2020:

As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise across the state, our precautions and screening processes remain in full force across all of our communities.

At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we activated a series of protections aimed at mitigating the threat at all of our communities. These included restricting visitors, daily screenings of all employees and vendors who entered the facility, and daily monitoring of all patients and residents in our care. These measures remain in place and will continue until there is no longer an imminent threat of exposure to the virus.

This morning we were notified that an independent living resident from Masonicare at Ashlar Village tested positive for COVID-19 and is being treated at a local hospital for symptoms of the virus.

In response to this development, Masonicare at Ashlar Village have increased precautions that include an immediate request for all residents to shelter in place until further notice. All meals and other necessities will be provided for in a modified manner.

As always, the continued safety of our residents and employee team members remains our highest priority. We will continue to provide updates as they become available.


UPDATED 3/27/2020:

Masonicare has a dedicated COVID-19 information email established for anyone who wishes to contact Masonicare with questions about COVID-19. The emails will be directed to appropriate individuals within the organization for a prompt response. All emails will be responded to within 24 business hours, Monday - Friday. The email address is:  Covid19Info@masonicare.org


UPDATED 3/26/2020:

While there continue to be no known cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) at Masonicare, we are remaining diligent in our efforts to maintain the safety and health of our residents, patients, families and employee team members. We continue to follow all necessary precautions and protocols in compliance with the CDC, the Connecticut Department of Public Health, and other state and federal agencies. We will continue to keep you updated on any new developments.


UPDATED 3/23/2020:

Masonicare is continuing to monitor COVID-19 and its impact on our communities. Please note that Governor Lamont’s new 'Stay Safe, Stay Home' executive order does not apply to our essential healthcare operations including “hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, elder care and home healthcare workers,” assuring that your loved ones will continue to receive the highest standard of care and service that we provide each and every day.

Our first priority continues to be the safety and well-being of our residents, patients and employee team members. Also in keeping with "Stay Safe, Stay Home' instructions, we have suspended our window visits at Masonicare Health Center until further notice. We will continue to keep you updated on any new developments.


UPDATED 3/19/2020:

An update from our President & CEO

Our senior leadership remains committed to our mission to do everything we can to maintain the health and safety of our residents, patients and employee team members.  Additionally, efforts continue to keep residents, patients and families engaged and informed. To that end, here are some of the ways in which we have adapted:

  • Staff are making calls and enabling video chat via FaceTime, Skype or other technologies
  • The dining experience has shifted to in-room vs. the dining room(s)
  • Limiting group gatherings, the recreation teams have developed modified social activities that can be experienced room to room

Many of our families, friends and employees have asked how they can help and we will continue to provide ideas and tips over the coming days.

Again, we thank you for your understanding and patience during this very difficult time.


UPDATED 3/18/2020:

We are continually screening our employee team members in accordance with CDC guidelines to protect our patients and residents, and we will continue to update you daily as the situation develops.

As we are constantly sharing important information about COVID-19 and reminders on the best ways to reduce the risk of infections, below is a link to guidelines released by The White House.

15 Days to Slow the Spread


UPDATED 3/17/2020:

COVID-19 Precautions at Masonicare at Ashlar Village, Masonicare at Chester Village, Masonicare at Mystic, Wright, Well, Johnson and Hawkins Apartments
 
During this unprecedented public health crisis, we at Masonicare want you to know we are dedicated to the health and safety of our residents and employees.
 
After thoughtful consideration and discussion, we have decided to suspend all community activities and congregation in common areas, including dining venues. Delivery dining options will be made available at each community in accordance with the direction of the respective executive director or administrator. Additionally, we have decided that, in the best interest of our residents, we will restrict any and all visitors, except in special cases for residents under Hospice care or receiving care for end of life. We understand the hardship this may pose to residents and families and, for that reason, the decision to move in this direction wasn't made lightly.
 
We appreciate your patience and understanding during this challenging time for our communities. Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your community’s executive director or administrator.


UPDATED 3/12/2020:

An important message from our President & CEO

While there continue to be no active cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) at Masonicare, we are remaining diligent in our efforts to maintain the safety and health of our residents, patients, families and employee team members. Our main focus at this time is prevention. Watch this message from Masonicare President and CEO, JP Venoit, for more information about how we are responding to COVID-19.


UPDATED 3/11/2020:

While there continue to be no active cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) at Masonicare, we are remaining diligent in our efforts to maintain the safety and health of our residents, patients, families and employee team members. Our main focus at this time is prevention.

Earlier this week, we complied with the State of Connecticut DPH's mandate to restrict visitors to our skilled nursing facility. Today, with everyone's best interest in mind and per new guidelines from LeadingAge, we are erring on the side of caution and have instituted precautionary screening measures at our senior living communities.

We are regularly updating Masonicare residents and family members; however, should you have any questions please reach out to your respective administrative team.

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we navigate this situation together.


UPDATED 03/10/2020:

In conjunction with the Department of Public Health’s directive to restrict all visitors except those with family members with extreme health conditions such as end-of-life care, we are restricting all visitors to Masonicare Health Center in Wallingford, CT, until further notice. While there are no cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) at Masonicare, we are acting proactively and in the best interest of our residents, patients, families and employee team members. Visitors who meet the criteria for visitation and are seeking entry into the facility will be required to undergo a pre-entry screening. 


While we understand these restrictions can be difficult, we are working to provide a variety of options that will allow our residents to visit with loved ones via video technologies such as FaceTime, Skype, Zoom and others. 
 
Thank you in advance for your understanding and support while we work to keep our residents and employees safe. We will continue to keep you updated and as always encourage you to call us directly if you have any questions or concerns. 
 

State of Connecticut Department of Public Health Visitor Restrictions - Directive to Nursing Homes


UPDATED 03/09/2020: 

While there are no cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) at Masonicare, following Department of Public Health (DPH) guidelines and out of an abundance of caution, we have made the decision to restrict visits to Masonicare Health Center in Wallingford until further notice. The only exception to this is in the event of extreme health conditions, such as hospice or end of life care. We will begin pre-entry screening of all visitors who meet this criteria, prior to allowing access to the facility.

Again, no diagnosis of coronavirus has been made at any of our facilities. We are acting proactively and in the best interest of our residents, patients and families as per state recommended guidelines.

Thank you in advance for your understanding and support while we work to keep our residents and employees safe.


While the news about the coronavirus in the United States is still developing, Masonicare wants to assure everyone that in the unlikely event of an outbreak within our communities, we are fully prepared.

The health, safety and peace of mind of our communities are our number one priority. Our front line teams are fully educated and trained and we are well stocked with all of the appropriate preventative and protective items needed to conduct business as usual. We are taking standard precautions such as:

  • Monitoring and taking direction from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and other local officials
  • Educating staff and visitors on our policies regarding coming to work or visiting our communities in the event they are experiencing symptoms
  • Ensuring our emergency procedures and protocols are documented and adhered to

Please take a moment to watch the short video below for helpful advice on the do’s and don’ts to help prevent the spread of this and other flu-like respiratory illnesses.

 

 

Facts vs. Myths COVID-19

Fact: Coronavirus is a respiratory illness, similar to influenza

Myth: Heat can kill the virus - Hand dryers & UV lamps can't kill the virus

Fact: Frequent handwashing is still the number one way to prevent the spread of infectious diseases such as coronavirus

Myth: Never open a package from China - The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed that packages from China are safe
 

Fact: The CDC recommends avoiding or canceling all nonessential travel to China and extra caution for travel to South Korea, Hong Kong, and Japan

Myth: You need to wear a mask - According to the CDC, people who are well do not need to wear face masks. Face masks should be worn only by those who are showing symptoms or who have the illness in order to protect others from being infected

Fact: At present, there is no evidence to suggest that domestic/pet dogs and cats can spread the virus

Myth: Eating a lot of garlic will help prevent coronavirus – while garlic is considered a healthy food with some antimicrobial properties, there are no indications it helps in the prevention of COVID-19

As we continue to gather more information, we will share it here.  Please check back often for updates and need-to-know information. In the meantime, we’ve provided the links below with additional resources:

CDC Fact Sheet: What you need to know (English)
CDC Fact Sheet: What you need to know (Spanish)

CDC Fact Sheet: What to do if you are sick with COVID-19 (English)
CDC Fact Sheet: What to do if you are sick with COVID-19 (Spanish)

CDC General Information
World Health Organization Information
CDC Information for Healthcare Professionals