Dear Family and Friends of Thief River Care Center,
Our last positive resident case was detected Monday, August 31st, making a total of 11 residents in the covid unit. No positive residents were identified yesterday or today, but we did identify additional staff cases, who have been placed into quarantine. We continue to monitor all residents’ vital signs and monitor for symptoms and testing when any symptoms are identified, and keeping a low threshold for testing. We have some residents in the Covid unit reaching the end of the quarantined period, which is 14-21 days depending on symptoms and weather the individual is considered “Immuno-compromised”.
Our county positivity rate has continued to be in the red (Meaning greater than a 10% infection rate in Pennington County) and we must continue testing twice per week as a result of this increased rate. Our next testing dates for all staff and residents will occur Friday, September 3rd, Tuesday September 7 & Friday September 10th.
West Pod (Blueberry) residents have been in quarantine since an exposure identified with the first positive case. This quarantine has to continue another 14 days because of another staff exposure that occurred last Thursday. We know it is difficult for residents to have to stay in their rooms. Unfortunately, West pod quarantine needs to go through September 9th and maybe be extended if any particular resident has symptoms or other known exposures. East/Evergreen pod residents have not had any known or traceable exposures so they are not considered to need to quarantine at this time.
The facility remains on lock down but we are carefully assessing the safe visiting practices and acknowledge the need for residents to see and have access to their loved ones. We know visitation is important to residents and families and we want to cooperate as safely as we can. Here is a breakdown of the plan for now.
- Residents who are not in quarantine (East/Evergreen Residents) can participate in window visits and outside visits. Outside visits will require masks and social distancing.
- Residents who are quarantine (West/Blueberry) and residents who are in the active Covid unit can participate in virtual or window visits.
- Regardless of resident isolation status, we prefer the windows to be closed during any window visit. If residents choose to open the windows, we are advising social distancing to occur while any window is open. For residents in the Covid Unit and residents in quarantine due to exposure, we strongly advise against opening the window at all during those visits. Social distancing for non-covid residents would require the visitor and the resident each to remain at least 3 feet from either side of the window.
Essential Caregivers: If you were an essential caregiver in previous covid outbreaks, we invite you to participate in testing starting Friday September 3rd. This is not a requirement in order to visit, just a “best practice” for those willing to participate.
If you were not previously an essential caregiver, and would like to become one, please reach out to Lori @ 683-8106. Here are a few highlights of what it means to be an essential caregiver, to meet the requirements set in place by Minnesota Department of Health.
Family or friend of resident, in any relationship, must
- Must provide the resident an essential service, such as feeding, assistance with cares, or mental stability/prevention of major or disruptive behaviors. (Note: The essential caregiver program is intended to be more than a regular visitor).
- Essential Caregivers should be scheduled in advance of their visit and at entry, should be screened and wearing a mask, following social distancing protocols and good hand hygiene practices. The facility is required to monitor traffic in and out and the facility and reserves the right to schedule essential caregivers in a way that reduces traffic and limits numbers of persons in the facility at any given time.
- Essential caregivers visits should be limited to 2-3 hours per visit and going “in and out and in again” is prohibited.
- Stay inside the resident’s room is required while the facility is considered in “outbreak mode”.
- Failure to adhere to any of the outlined requirements may result in the facility prohibiting the invididual from coming to the care center during this or future outbreaks.
For more information on how to become an essential caregiver, or for scheduling of essential caregivers, please reach out to Lori Thompson at 683-8106. Essential caregivers can begin coming on site as soon as Friday, September 3rd.
Also important to note that there are visitation protocols in place for residents who are at end of life. Please reach out to the Nurse Manager of your resident’s pod or someone else in the nursing department to be considered for end of life visits. The interdisciplinary team reviews each request on a case by case basis.
We appreciate your patience and we will continue to update resident families using this automated system. If you would like to be added to the list, or you know someone else you want added to the list, please email your Name, Your resident, your phone # or email address to email@example.com