Dear Garden House Residents, Family Members and Responsible Parties,
We know how eager our residents and family members are to visit each other once again.
Last Friday afternoon we received information from Governor Cuomo and the New York State Department of Health (DOH) about new restricted visitor guidelines that will take effect immediately. I am writing today to update you on the strict criteria that assisted living facilities are required to meet before visitation can occur, as well as specific guidelines that we must follow once restricted visits are able to take place.
The key guideline from Governor Cuomo and the DOH that is required before restricted visits can occur includes the absence of any new onset of COVID-19 among residents or staff members for at least 28 days.
I am very pleased to report that Garden House successfully meets this requirements as we have not had any COVID-19 cases in residents or staff members. We continue to test staff for COVID-19 weekly.
While we have been anticipating and planning for the possibility of opening visitation for some time, the guidelines outlined by the Governor and the DOH contain specific criteria unique to New York State that exceed the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We are required to put several protocols in place before we will be permitted to open for restricted visitation. We anticipate that we will be able to offer restricted visitation as early as next week, with the following mandated protocols:
- Pre-scheduled appointments.
- Visitors must participate in pre-visit questionnaire screening.
- Visits will be allowed in designated locations only. Visitors are not permitted in resident rooms or clinical areas.
- Visitors will be required to answer COVID-19 screening questions onsite and temperatures will be taken. Individuals with a temperature above 100.4 will not be permitted to visit.
- Individuals who have traveled outside of New York State to areas with high community spread of COVID-19 will not be permitted to visit until after the 14-day quarantine has been met.
- Visits must be supervised by a staff person.
- Everyone involved in a restricted visit must wear a face mask at all times. This means that eating and drinking are not permitted.
- Social distancing of at least six feet apart at all times.
- Only two visitors at a time are permitted per resident. Visitors under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
Rest assured that we are working very hard to put everything in place that will allow us to meet the state’s stringent guidelines. I will provide an update next week about when and how you can make arrangements to visit your loved ones.
It is our hope to reunite residents with their families and loved ones as safely as possible, as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact me directly with any questions you have.