Covid-19 Policies & Resources
COVID-19 is a highly contagious respiratory illness that we first heard about occurring in China 2019. In 2020 we saw the COVID-19 virus spread from one country to another until it was confirmed in the United States. By mid- March 2020, it had been detected in all 50 states. Polk County, Nebraska had their first confirmed case in early April 2020. Midwest Covenant Home has been very fortunate to not have any cases at this time.
The population of our nursing home and the assisted living residents often have underlying chronic medical conditions which would put them at a higher risk of being affected by respiratory pathogens like COVID-19. At the beginning of March 2020, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services and The Centers for Disease Control began giving direction to facilities about visitors and screening that would need to be done. Here is a timeline of our actions to date to protect our vulnerable residents and staff.
• March 9, 2020 we began monitoring visitors to Midwest Covenant Home.
• March 16, 2020 we asked that no visitors would come to Midwest Covenant Home unless your loved one was on Hospice care.
• April 3, 2020 all staff started wearing masks.
• We have continued this process to remind staff and improve infection control practices.
We have now just received word from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services that we can work on a process to slowly relax restrictions. We are hopeful our plan will be approved quickly so stay tuned and check on the website for more information. We plan to update this site weekly or more often if needed. We are eager to have the residents get back to normal but we need to do it in a safe manner.
Last week we were informed by the Department of Health and Human Services that we could start developing a plan to gradually move forward with lessening restrictions on our nursing home and assisted living, which is the news we have all been waiting to hear. We are working on this new plan but they have several things we have to take into consideration like access to adequate testing, staff testing, if there are COVID positive cases in the community or nursing home, adequate staffing, adequate personal protective equipment for staff and visitors coming into the facility, and local hospital capacity.
We ask for your patience as we work through this. We do understand that the residents are missing their family/friends and you are all missing them too. We want this lessening of restrictions to be successful so we will hopefully not have to go back into the quarantine phase again.
As we begin to work through this planning for reopening, we need to educate our friends and families of the residents. We will be updating the website with education on reopening at least weekly. If you have questions or concerns please feel free to call Katherine Adkins LPN IP at 402-764-2711 she is in the office M-F 8-4.
Hand Hygiene- We encourage everyone to use good hand hygiene like washing your hands or using hand sanitizer before and after you would eat, after going to the bathroom, after touching pets, after being outside, after coughing sneezing or blowing your nose and as you enter and leave a nursing home or an assisted living facility.
We have learned masks are important in slowing and stopping the spread of the COVID virus. We have attached some instructions for wearing masks.
Wear your Face Covering Correctly
- Wash your hands before putting on your face covering
- Put it over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin
- Try to fit it snugly against the sides of your face
- Make sure you can breathe easily
Take Off Your Cloth Face Covering Carefully, When You’re Home
- Untie the strings behind your head or stretch the ear loops
- Handle only by the ear loops or ties
- Fold outside corners together
- Place covering in the washing machine
- Be careful not to touch your eyes, nose, and mouth when removing and wash hands immediately after removing.
Use the Face Covering to Protect Others
- Wear a face covering to help protect others in case you’re infected but don’t have symptoms
- Keep the covering on your face the entire time you’re in public
- Don’t put the covering around your neck or up on your forehead
- Don’t touch the face covering, and, if you do, wash your hands
Who should NOT use cloth face coverings: children under age 2, or anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Follow Everyday Health Habits
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Wash your hands often, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds each time
- Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available
Please contact Katherine Adkins, LPN, IP at 402-764-2711 with Covid-19 related questions.
As we said in last week’s update, the Department of Health and Human Services told us to come up with a plan for beginning to lessen the restrictions on nursing home and assisted living facilities. We finalized our reopening plan this week and informed the Department of Health and Human Services it was complete. Today we learned that the Department of Health and Human Services would be sending us the phased plan. We hope that we will get that from the state this week so we can integrate that into the plan we have at this time. We know that waiting is so hard but we promise you we are trying to get our residents back to some kind of normal. If you have any questions please feel free to call Katherine Adkins at 402-764-2711. Thank you all for you cooperation and your patience in this very trying time.
Symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19)
What you need to know
- Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms.
- Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.
Watch for symptoms
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness.
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19.
When to Seek Emergency Medical Attention
Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately
- Trouble breathing
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
- New confusion
- Inability to wake or stay awake
- Bluish lips or face
*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.
Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19
Thank you for your cooperation and patience over the last several months! I know that it has not been easy on anyone but I hope that it was as good as it could be given the circumstances.
In an effort to stay within compliance and be able to ease into our new normal for dining, we will be serving all meals in two shifts starting on Monday June 22nd 2020. Meals will be served in the dining room at the following times:
First shift will be West hall and the East hall even numbered rooms and the second shift will be South hall and the East hall odd numbered rooms
Breakfast: 7:30AM – 8:15AM
Lunch: 11:30AM – 12:15PM
Supper: 4:45 PM – 5:30PM
Assisted Living- will also be transitioning back to meals in the dining room as well and will have 2 meal times for all meals to start with.
- Residents will need to be 6 feet apart and no more than 2 per table
- Residents will wash their hands or use hand sanitizer prior to coming to the Dining room
- Residents will need to wear masks in the hallway while going to and from the dining room.
- Hands will need be washed or hand sanitizer used when leaving the dining room.
- Staff will need to wear masks at all times when in contact with residents.
Last week we updated our facility plan for the reopening of the facility. The state said that to move to the next phase of reopening we have to have our staff tested for COVID. With the help of the Nebraska National Guard and Test Nebraska we did the testing on Friday at Midwest Covenant Home. The staff was very willing to get this done so that the residents can start to get back to normal and see their families again.
We will now have staff screening all visitors coming into the building when we are able to do visitation. Please follow the signage for guidance and if you have questions please call and talk to Katherine Adkins LPN.
We will be reaching out to families with phone calls next week to talk about the plans for visitation to the facility.
Thank you once again for your cooperation and patience as we all get through this together.
We are working towards lessening the restrictions we have been under for months now. All the staff were tested for COVID on June 19th 2020 and everyone tested negative.
Residents started coming out for meals in the dining room on June 22nd 2020 with rules, such as residents must be 6 feet apart and no more than two people per table. It has been going well and residents are excited to be out and about again.
As of Monday June 29th 2020 you can call and make an appointment with the front office to come and visit your loved ones. We ask that you call 402-764-2711 Monday through Friday 8am-12:00pm and 12:30pm- 4pm to make an appointment. We will have 6 appointment times available for nursing home and 6 appointment times available for assisted living every day Monday through Friday. We have set specific times for up to two visitors per time slot at 10am, 3pm and 7pm. You will be able to visit for 30 minutes. There will be specific areas to visit your loved ones. We will be having the visits outside, weather permitting. If the weather is not conducive for outside visiting, we will have you come inside and the staff will show you where to go for your visit. Visits will start Tuesday June 30th 2020. The visitors will need to be screened by Midwest Covenant Home staff even if you are going to visit outside. You will have to be healthy, wear a mask and sanitize your hands. We thank you for your patience at this difficult time but we are happy that we have all stayed COVID-free. If you have further questions please call Katherine Adkins 402-764-2711.