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Visitation Policy for Clearwater

Limited Skilled Nursing Facility Visitation (COVID-19)

PURPOSE:

To facilitate Skilled Nursing Facility (i.e. Clearwater / nursing home) person-centered visits which consider the residents’ physical, mental and psychosocial well-being and supports individual quality of life, while also considering the COVID-19 pandemic.

POLICY:

It is the policy of Kendal on Hudson’s Skilled Nursing Facility, Clearwater, to facilitate visitation for residents in accordance with guidance released by the New York State Department of Health and the facility’s Infection Control Program. Visitation will, always, adhere to core principles of infection control and best practices that reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission including, but not limited to:

• Screening of all who enter the facility to signs and symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., temperature checks, questions about and observations of signs or symptoms), and denial of entry of those with signs or symptoms or those who have had close contact with someone with COVID-19 infection in the prior 10 days (regardless of the visitor’s vaccination status).
• Hand hygiene (use of alcohol-based hand rub is preferred).
• Mandatory use of a well-fitting surgical mask (covering mouth and nose). KN95s or N95s are also acceptable for visitor use.
• Social distancing of at least six feet between persons.
• Instructional signage throughout the facility and proper visitor education on COVID-19.
• Cleaning and disinfection of high frequency touched surfaces and in designated visitation areas in the facility often and after each visit.
• Appropriate staff use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

GUIDELINES:

Clearwater will accommodate resident visits where the number of visitors is dictated by the ability to social distance in any given visitation area. Therefore, no more than two (2) visitors at any time may visit in a resident room. The resident lounge can accommodate three (3) visitors in addition to the resident. Groups of visitors larger than four (4) must use outdoor space or contact the facility in advance to ensure that visitation can be accommodated. Visits should be held outdoors whenever practicable.

  1. Visitors are welcome at any time, however, preferred visiting hours are between 10am and 7pm, seven (7) days per week.
  2. Visitors must wear a facility-issued surgical mask or mask of higher quality (i.e., a visitor may supply their own KN95 or N95). Cloth masks are only acceptable if they cover a surgical mask. Masks must always cover both the nose and mouth. Masks must remain on throughout the entire visit.
  3. Visitors are highly encouraged to socially distance from the resident with whom they are visiting. However, it is the resident’s decision to be closer or have touch during the visit. Visitors are required to physically distance from facility staff and other residents and visitors that are not directly associated with the specific resident they are visiting.

TESTING REQUIRED for VISITORS:

  1.  Visitors must show evidence of a negative test prior to entering Clearwater for their visit. Negative tests results are needed as follows
    • For an antigen test, results no older than one day prior to visit
    • For a PCR test, results no older than two days prior to visit
  2. For frequent visitors, those who visit daily or multiple times through a week, proof of testing is required as often as feasible but at minimum every third day. If this applies to a particular visitor, they must have an approved testing schedule confirmed by the Administrator or Director of Nursing Services.
  3. As supplies are available, Department of Health supplied rapid antigen tests may be provided to a visitor in advance of a visit. To use this product, it must be completed at home, prior to visiting and the test result must be shown to a facility representative upon visitation. Results can be shown through
    • The application provided by the product on a smartphone, or
    • By taking a time/day stamped photo of the completed test and showing it on a cell phone, or
    • Directly by showing the test cartridge. For infection control purposes, such cartridges must be secured in a clear plastic Ziploc bag. It will not be accepted otherwise. Once presented as proof, the test cartridge will be discarded. Note that extended storage of a cartridge may impact the ability to read it clearly. If you plan to show the cartridge in person, it is recommended to take the test no more than 1 hour before visiting

Compassionate caregiving visitors, within the meaning of Public Health Law §2801-h, who are visiting in anticipation of the end of a residents’ life or in the instance of a significant mental, physical, or social decline or crisis of a resident, are exempt from testing requirements. Application of this definition must be made by the Clearwater interdisciplinary care team and approved by the Director of Nursing Services.

INFECTION CONTROL EXPECTATIONS FOR VISITS:

Visitors observed to be unable to adhere to the core principles of COVID-19 infection prevention will be asked to leave and may be restricted from visiting in the future. Should this occur, facility staff will document this occurrence.

Residents may choose to have close contact (including touch) with their visitor while wearing well-fitting mask and performing hand hygiene before and after. At all other times, physical distance should be maintained. Residents and visitors should be aware that close contact, regardless of vaccination status, does pose a risk for transmission of COVID-19.

Staff will continue to adhere to best practices to mitigate COVID-19 exposure. Therefore, no staff will be closer than 6 feet to visitors for a duration of 10 minutes or more. Should a resident need the care/services of a staff member during a visit, visitors will be asked to leave or remain socially distanced while the resident’s needs are met.

VISITATION DURING AN OUTBREAK:

An outbreak exists when a new nursing home onset of COVID-19 occurs (i.e. a new COVID-19 case among residents or staff). Both Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the NYS Department of Health support visitation during Nursing Home outbreaks. Visitors should use their best judgment and apply knowledge of their own health risk factors when deciding to visit under such circumstances. The only time that visitation will be closed completely during an outbreak is at the direction of the local Department of Health.

*https://data.cms.gov/stories/s/COVID-10-Nusing-Home-Data/bkwz-xpvg