|Residents and Families of Retirement Concepts
|West Coast Seniors Housing Management
|March 25, 2021
|Update to COVID-19 Long Term Care and Assisted Living Guidelines
Hello Families and Friends of Retirement Concepts:
Current COVID-19 guidelines in Long Term Care and Assisted Living Communities are being revised provincially effective April 1st, 2021. Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer delivered an update today with province wide changes to current restrictions including changes to the visitor guidelines.
Starting April 1st, the following changes will be put into place:
- All residents will be allowed regular, frequent, and routine opportunities for social visitation
- Visits must allow for a minimum of 60 minutes (they must be booked in advance). Visits per day may be limited to meet operational requirements in keeping with the sanitization and screening guidelines
- Visits will be scheduled in one hour blocks and a suggested maximum of 2 blocks per resident visit
- In an effort to ensure all residents have the opportunity to see their loved ones, we are currently booking one visit per week per resident. Visits outside of the community can occur in any frequency
- Visitors are requested to not bring in pets during these visits
- The “single designated social visitor” restriction will be removed, allowing additional family and friends to visit
- The number of visitors will be expanded, allowing up to two visitors, plus a child (defined as 18 or younger) at any one time
- Visits will be allowed to be made in the resident’s room, a designated visiting space, or on outings with no requirement for isolation afterwards. On outings, residents will be offered a mask before exiting
- Allowing physical touch to occur between visitors and resident with appropriate Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) measures in place (e.g., hand hygiene, masks)
- Visitors will be asked only to visit with one resident at a time, and to limit their group activities.
- Physical contact—including hugging—will be allowed, provided visitors wear a mask and follow proper infection control procedures (e.g. hand hygiene and cough etiquette)
- Removing physical distancing requirements between residents
- Resuming resident communal dining and small group social or recreational activities for residents, within a facility unit or floor
- Removing requirement for 14-day isolation for admissions into the facility, and providing immunizations if needed
We ask families and residents to keep in mind the following requirements:
- Social visitation will continue to require advanced booking, screening of visitors, use of medical masks, and practicing frequent hand hygiene. A new mask and hand hygiene options will be provided at the entrance
- Social visitation will be suspended during outbreaks and enhanced monitoring periods
- Essential and compassionate visitation remains in place and any resident who requires this is supported
- Strict adherence to Infection Prevention & Control practices are essential. We encourage you to sanitize your hands, belongings, and gathering spaces
- Visitors are asked to stay home if they are feeling unwell. Please don’t come if you’re not feeling well
- Regular screening of residents and visitors for signs of illness will continue to be performed. If there are any concerns in regards to COVID-19 symptoms the visitor may not be permitted
- Once the visitor is in a resident space they must keep their mask on and are asked to frequently perform hand hygiene
- Please limit your visits to one care home per day to ensure limited cross contamination
Protecting those most vulnerable is our top priority at Retirement Concepts and with an added layer of protection with our seniors being vaccinated against COVID-19, we are glad to see the easing of restrictions. The benefits of this social interaction are said to currently outweigh the risks of COVID-19. However, any non-compliance of the current requirements and guidelines may result in the visit being suspended. We ask families and friends to practice safety and caution in order to keep all of our residents and team members safe and healthy during this time.
Lastly, we encourage you all to obtain your vaccine when you’re eligible and keep within the provincial guidelines in your daily lives. As restrictions ease, your loved ones safety is also in your hands. Performing hand hygiene, proper PPE, self-monitoring for symptoms and enhanced sanitization in your day to day is now more important than ever.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.