Family Visitation

July 6th, 2022 Update

As you are likely aware, the Nova Scotia Government is recommending further loosening of COVID management guidelines for long term care facilities. Before we can get into their recommendations, let’s have a look at what we learned during the latest COVID-19 outbreak:

  • Residents: 38 residents were COVID positive – fortunately, they were all vaccinated and most had very mild symptoms
  • Staff: 25 staff were required to isolate due to contracting COVID-19
  • Significant staff stress due to the necessity to fully gown, glove, mask and shield in order to provide care to our residents

Based on our recent experience, we acknowledge the impact a COVID-19 outbreak has on our residents, families and staff. Our response to today’s Government recommendations reflect our ability to support the safeguards we will continue to implement to reduce the likelihood of future outbreaks.

Outbreak Update:

  • Outbreaks have been declared over in Cobblestone, Thistledown, Tanglewood, Maple Ridge and Brambleberry
  • Martha’s Place remains in a Suspected Outbreak situation – see visitation guidelines below.

Screening:

  • Our Main Entrance screening practices are under review, however they will remain in place and include temperature checks and signing in

Visitation: Non Outbreak Care Area

  • DCG’s, family and friends are all welcome to visit your loved ones here at the RK
  • 3 visitors in a private living area, 2 visitors in a semi private resident room at one time
  • There are no restrictions on where your visits can take place – indoors or outdoors – our gardens are in full bloom!
  • Please do not bring food or drink for yourself as masks must remain on at all times for indoor visits
  • Mask are encouraged for outdoor visits while maintaining 6’ social distancing
  • Visitors no longer have to be vaccinated
  • Visitation hours are from 11:00am to 7:00pm, seven days a week
  • Masks are strongly encouraged for resident offsite outings

Visitation: Outbreak Care Area

  • Only Designated Care Givers are welcome to visit – full Personal Protective Equipment will be available for DCG’s – please complete the DCG education session
  • Please do not bring food or drink for yourself as masks must remain on at all times for indoor visits
  • Residents must remain in their care area to reduce the risk of spread

DCG Education

This initiative will enable DCG’s to safely visit during a suspected or an outbreak situation. DCG’s can sign up by calling either 902-863-2578 ext. 222 or 902-863-3458.

Important reminder

Managing COVID will be an ongoing challenge and we fully anticipate experiencing future outbreaks. Our goal is to minimize the risk to our residents and staff. We ask that when out in public please consider wearing a mask …. COVID-19 is still very active, very invisible, very contagious and has a significant impact on our ability to safely staff the Home in order to continue providing quality care to your loved ones!”

Please forward this update to your family members and any friends that visit the RK.

Terry MacIntyre, CEO
RK MacDonald Senior Leadership Team

March 11, 2022 Update

 

The silent infectious period of COVID-19 is our central risk factor in managing COVID. However, another risk needs to be considered; the balance between protecting the physical health of our residents from and supporting the overall well-being versus becoming COVID +ve. The key word here is “balance”.

We know the value of having visitors in the Home; you bring a vibrant energy that is shared not only with your family member, with others residents and staff you meet along the way. Furthermore, our safety practices requiring us to screen you, check your temperature, support proper mask wearing and hand washing helps to keep our safety measures front and center.

Please note, in the event COVID does make its presence known in the Home, we are all vaccinated, we have an excellent staff and we have immediate access to our Government partners. Trusting our safety measures, it’s time to take the next step.

DCG Visitation: Phase 3 – effective Monday, March 14, 2002

  • Long-term care residents can have up to 3 visitors at a time in a private resident room and two (2) visitors at a time in a semi-private resident room (doesn’t need to be the same visitors each time).
  • Visitation is open seven (7) days a week from 11:00am to 7:00pm.
  • Visitors at long-term care facilities need to wear a maskand be fully vaccinated (exceptions for vaccinations for end-of-life visits). Visitors need to follow social distancing guidelines (except for a quick, close contact, like a hug).
  • Residents can leave the facility to visit with family in their homes (overnight stays are not permitted). Residents can also leave the facility to visit indoor and outdoor public places (like parks, stores and restaurants). Residents and visitors need to follow public health measures: social distancingand masks are required – a brief risk assessment is completed on return to the Home

Outings should be pre booked with the front screener by calling ext. 222 or cell 902 870-3458 and resident needs to return by 6:30pm to complete the Outing Risk Assessment.

  • In event we experience a COVID +ve case, pending circumstances, our goal will be to only restrict access to the care area involved.
  • Wash your hands regularly when visiting.
  • Keep your mask over your nose and mouth at all times – this is the most important component of our safety practices – no gaps in masking!
  • Please do not bring food or drinks to the Home as it creates a “gap in masking” opportunity for you. Feel welcome to bring treats for your family member.
  • On arrival, Visitors [including DCG’s] will be provided with a mask for themselves and second mask for their family member resident – we strongly recommend residents wear a mask during the visit
  • New resident DCG’s and volunteers will be provided with the Infection Prevention and Control in-service prior to their initial visit.
  • Please do not visit the Home if you are feeling unwell or are a close contact of a COVID +ve individual. If you become unwell and test positive for COVID-19 after visiting, please let us know immediately by calling 902-714-5656.
  • Phase 4 will be re-evaluated in 4 weeks.

 

Please share this visitation update with friends and family members!

Senior Leadership Team at the R.K. MacDonald Nursing Home

February 18th, 2022 Update

 

Dear Families,

In Phase 1 our safety practices for staff and Designated Care Givers were assessed and I am pleased to say increased visitation was well received.

I sense that our community is still stressed with COVID’s lingering presence and that the path forward remains uncertain. We are all likely experiencing a bit of anxiety and within this environment, we have to move forward with confidence and in a calculated manner.

Our COVID safety practices have been challenged and they have proven effective. Our residents have received their booster, our staff is doubly vaccinated and many have received a booster and our collective attention to the importance of proper mask wearing is commendable.

Today we announce Phase 2 of our visitation program.

DCG Visitation: Phase 2 – effective Monday, Feb. 21, 2002

  • Visitation is now available to two (2) doubly vaccinated Designated Care Givers [DCG’s]
  • Visitation is open seven (7) days a week from 11:00am to 5:00pm
  • In event we experience a COVID +ve case, pending circumstances, our goal will be to only restrict access to the care area involved
  • Wash your hands regularly when visiting
  • Keep your mask over your nose and mouth at all times – this is the most important component of our safety practices – no gaps in masking!
  • Please do not bring food or drinks to the Home as it creates a “gap in masking” opportunity. Feel welcome to bring treats for your family member
  • On arrival, DCG’s will be provided with a mask for themselves and second mask for their family member resident – we strongly recommend residents wear a mask during the visit
  • No switching DCG’s
  • Visits to take place in the residents room with the door open to support proper mask wearing
  • New resident DCG’s will be provided with the Infection Prevention and Control in-service prior to their initial visit
  • Please do not visit the Home if you are feeling unwell or are a close contact of a COVID +ve individual
  • If you become unwell and test positive for COVID-19 after visiting, please let us know immediately by calling 902-714-5656
  • Phase 2 will be re-evaluated in 2 weeks

 

On behalf of our Residents, Senior Leadership team and all our staff, we continue to welcome families back onto our community!

Thank you for your ongoing support!

Terry MacIntyre, CEO

January 14th, 2022 Update:

 

Please note that due to the prevalence of COVID-19 in our local community and provincially, the Home remains closed to all visitation, including Designated Care Givers. For families with a loved one receiving palliative care, compassion visits are readily available with a limit of ten (10) family members.

The home is updating our risk assessment pertaining to visitation and reopening to visitation will be reassessed on Jan. 31, 2022.

Thank you for your ongoing support during these very challenging times.

Sincerely,
Terry MacIntyre CEO