November 23, 2020: For Emerald Heights, providing the best possible care, and protecting the health and wellness of residents and employees is of highest priority. We are continuing to monitor the COVID-19 situation very closely to ensure we are taking all appropriate measures to protect our community and are working closely with the Washington Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
There is one Independent Living resident currently known with an active case of COVID-19 at Emerald Heights.
Infection control measures remain in place to mitigate the risk of transmission, including all of the measures listed below.
Acting upon the guidance of, and in consultation with the CDC and the Department of Health, in conjunction with the Governor’s emergency proclamations, CMS’s Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in Retirement Communities and Independent Living Facilities (Interim Guidance), and CMS’s Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Nursing Homes, the following practices are in place to help prevent the spread of this virus:
- Only pre-scheduled visitors are allowed on campus at this time for visits with independent living, skilled nursing and assisted living residents; those visits are restricted to outdoor visits only. If you are interested in a visit with your loved one in skilled nursing or assisted living please contact Alexandra Clark at email@example.com for available times. For independent living, please contact Pat Kivela at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that outside visits are restricted to no more than five persons total.
- Family and friends may deliver items for residents between the hours of 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. for staff to deliver to individual residents.
- Emerald Heights is monitoring the Governors’ Safe Start Washington phased plan to re-open businesses and services; however, while the Governor’s plan is broad and addresses a number of industry sectors, it is not specific to Senior Living. Emerald Heights has followed the guidance of local health jurisdictions, the CDC, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and Governor Inslee’s directives as we began to implement a cautious, phased re-opening plan for re-introduction of services on campus. While King County and our Independent Living Services were in Phase 2 of the Governors’ 4-phased Safe Start Washington plan, and Corwin Center skilled nursing, and assisted living and memory care were in Phase 1 of the Governor’s LTC phased reopening plan, the Governor has mandated new restrictions that take effect November 17th, for a four week period.
- Outdoor fitness, gatherings and amenities (putting green, croquet court, lawn bowling and garden plots) are limited to 5 or fewer persons. Residents continue to participate in other programs and events spanning the 7-elements of Wellness through creative on-line videos, webinars and virtual meetings.
- The Arts and Crafts Room, and Library are open with a maximum of 3 residents socially distanced; the Coffee Shop is open for take-out only..
- Non-essential maintenance requests in Independent Living resumed with phase 1.5.
- Transportation for grocery and other shopping remains suspended; residents are encouraged to order groceries online for delivery, or pick-up and delivery by Emerald Heights’ staff.
- Transportation to individual medical appointments is limited to medically necessary office visits; residents are greatly encouraged to use telehealth options with their medical providers.
- Dining rooms throughout campus are also closed; all meals are being delivered or provided by carry-out.
- Elements Day Spa has re-opened with limited services and may serve one client at a time.
- The fitness center remains closed for general use and is not planned to re-open until Phase 3. Personal training sessions and guided classes are currently suspended.
- The swimming pool remains open with a limit of 7 persons maximum for aqua aerobics classes, and a 3 person maximum for free swim hours.
- Increased frequency of disinfection of high-touch surfaces in common areas and in the health center continues.
- Housekeeping Services in Independent Living Apartments resumed with Phase 1.5.
- All employees, residents, vendors, and pre-approved visitors are being screened with Washington Department of Health recommended health questions at the front entry.
- All employees, vendors, and pre-approved visitors who do not pass the screening questions are not being allowed on campus.
- Every person arriving on campus is required to have their temperature taken upon arrival. Should a fever be exhibited they will be asked to leave campus, or to self-isolate in their home on campus.
- All essential health care personnel working within the Corwin Center assisted living and skilled nursing are being screened for signs and symptoms and temperature taken before and after their shifts.
- All personnel working on campus are required to wear masks; all residents, whether they have COVID-19 symptoms or not, are requested to cover their noses and mouths when staff are in their room.
- Per the Governor’s order, all residents are required to wear masks when out in public spaces.
- Every resident in Corwin Center is assessed for symptoms and has their temperature checked at each staff shift change.
- Corwin Center residents who receive, or are showing signs and symptoms of a COVID-19 diagnosis, are placed on isolation measures and treated using isolation protocols.
- IL residents who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or who are exhibiting any symptoms, are required to self-isolate; additional services are available to support residents in self-isolation.
As we continue efforts to contain the spread of this virus, staff and residents are asked to self-monitor their health closely. Staff who note any flu like signs or symptoms are required to notify their supervisor immediately and will be sent home. Both staff and residents experiencing symptoms should contact their primary health care provider, and isolate themselves immediately while they await diagnosis.
Residents and staff are urged to follow the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html for prevention of any viral respiratory illness, including frequent hand washing, practice of good cough etiquette, advising those exhibiting any symptoms of the virus, or in direct contact with those exhibiting symptoms (sore throat, cough, fever) to remain at home until symptom free for 72 hours. Thank you for your support and understanding as we work diligently to ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of residents and staff. As this is a rapidly changing situation we recommend for the most current information about COVID-19, visit the CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html, Department of Health https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/Coronavirus, or King County https://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/health/communicable-diseases/disease-control/novel-coronavirus.aspx websites. We have also established a COVID-19 message hotline at 425.556.8187; this hotline is monitored Monday-Friday from 8:00 am – 5 pm. Messages left on the hotline after hours and on weekends will be picked up the next business day.