We know that you may have questions during these extraordinary times. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers to provide more information during this time.
We will update this information regularly as the situation changes, and please do not hesitate to call us with questions.
Q: Should I take my family member out of The Hearth?
Memory care, and assisted living residents receive additional services. While at home within our community they are able to receive the around the clock care they need at all times, which may be difficult for family members to provide during these stressful times.Close
Q: Does The Hearth have any positive residents?
At this time, The Hearth does not have any residents who have tested positive. We are prepared if this were to happen. We have taken the following steps. It is important to note that we have taken these steps prior to requirements from the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS), and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC):
- We have contacted all appropriate authorities.
- We continue to communicate and follow guidelines created by the Centers for Disease Control, Pennsylvania Department of Health, and The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
- We have ended outside visitation, and restricted travel for residents on March 11, prior to the state requirement.
- We ended all communal meals and activates.
- We canceled all non-essential outside medical appointments.
- We have established and are participating in a COVID-19 Task Force that is comprised of healthcare professionals and leadership across Liberty Lutheran’s family of services so that we can share information and expertise.
- Staff are practicing social distancing.
- We are seeking all potential sources to build our personal protective equipment supply at all of our communities.
- We have contracted additional cleaning services and continue to routinely clean common areas and “high touch surfaces” throughout the day.
- We are limiting outside providers' access to our community based on the needs of our residents.
- We are closely monitoring our residents and staff for any symptoms. If staff share or demonstrate any symptoms they are being sent home immediately.
- We are taking staff temperatures at the beginning and end of shifts.
- We are continually evaluating any changes associated with guidelines, expert medical insights, and trends to stay up-to-date with new strategies to prevent and combat COVID-19.
- We are posting up-to-date information throughout our communities and conducting trainings on a daily basis.
- All staff within our communities have masks and are wearing them at all times when in contact with residents.
- At The Hearth at Drexel we are monitoring all residents’ temperatures two times a day as well as their respiratory health and overall health.
- At The Hearth at Drexel we have engaged NexClean, a leading provider of deep clean solutions for the healthcare industry, to proactively clean and disinfect our entire community.
Q: Does The Hearth have staff members that have tested positive for COVID 19?
The Hearth at Drexel does not currently have any cases. The community had staff members test positive previously. We are adhering to the Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines for all staff members tested positive no matter their role.Close
Q: What are the Department of Health guidelines for healthcare workers to return to work after testing positive?
- DOH is recommending that persons with COVID-19, including healthcare providers (HCP) under home isolation be released from isolation after a minimum of 10 days after symptom onset and after 72 hours of being afebrile and feeling well.
- People with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 who have not had any symptoms may discontinue isolation when at least 10 days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test and have no subsequent illness.
- Healthcare persons returning to work after being released from isolation must wear a facemask at all times and be restricted from caring for severely immunocompromised patients for 14 days after symptom onset, as well as adhere to strict hand and respiratory hygiene and monitor for symptoms.
- Household contacts of persons positive with COVID-19 must be quarantined for 14 days after their last household exposure. For some, this will be 14 days after the person with COVID-19 is released from isolation.
- People who had close contact with a symptomatic person with COVID-19 must be quarantined for 14 days from the last contact with the person with COVID-19.
Q: When will visitors be allowed back in The Hearth?
The Hearth at Drexel has received 3-step re-opening guidance from the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services and will begin visitation outside on community grounds starting August 3rd. Weather permitting, outside visitation hours will be 10:00 am to 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Each visit will be limited to 20 minutes with 10 minutes in between for transportation/sanitizing. Visitations can be cancelled if adequate monitoring can not occur.
Visitors will contact Laurie Coffman or Barbara Miller at 610-664-5967 or via email at [email protected] for Laurie Coffman or [email protected] for Barbara
Miller. Visits must be scheduled a minimum of 24 hours in advance to allow for sufficient resident assistance/monitoring. Weekend visits must be scheduled by noon on Friday.
Up to 3 visitors for each resident/visit can be accomidated at each visiting area. Visitors ages 12 years of age and over are welcome. All visitors are asked to maintain social distancing and to wear masks during their visit.Close
Q: Can I visit my loved one outside?
If you would prefer to visit a resident with a vestibule visit, you can come to the community and stand outside of your loved one's window (window must remain closed) or we can escort your loved one to the East or West vestibule where you can see each other –you can talk thru the glass panes or via telephones.Close
Q: Can I bring a package to my loved one?
Yes, we are accepting packages at the loading dock. We will wipe down all packages and distribute them to the residents.Close
Q: How is The Hearth's staffing?
The Hearth's staffing remains strong.Close
Q: What plans have been implemented to engage residents during this time?
We are doing everything we can to provide meaningful interactions with our residents. We are offering doorway exercise class, doorway trivia and music programs. We have distributed activity packets with crossword puzzles, find an item, trivia questions and coloring pages. The residents also have enjoyed our rolling bar and treat carts. We are offering Face-timing and skyping with friends and family. Residents are also asked if they would like to walk outside or sit on the patio, weather permitting.Close
Q: If my loved one becomes ill—are you still sending residents to the hospital?
Yes, if a resident requires hospitalization they will be transported to the hospital. To ensure everyone’s safety (when possible) we are escorting the resident out of the building to the awaiting ambulance. We will provide a mask for the resident (if tolerated) to decrease exposure during transport and in ER.Close
Q: Is The Hearth still allowing admissions?
The Hearth is accepting new admissions for residents. New residents must test negative for COVID-19 prior to moving. The safety of our residents is among our highest priorities and a second test is administered on the move-in day. We are asking new residents to quarantine within their apartment home until the results of the second results are recieved, usually about 72 hours or less. After recieving a negative test result the new resident may join community activities and dining.Close
Q: What are vestibule visits?
If requested, the resident can come to the East or West vestibules and family can come outside to visit. (door is to remain closed)
Q: What is the procedure for mail and packages?
Mail is delivered to the residents every day (we do hold mail for 3 days before delivery). Packages are received at the loading dock, sanitized and delivered to the residents apartment.Close
Q: Are and how are residents encouraged to exercise and go outdoors?
Exercise is held daily on each household, all residents are asked by the exercise leader if they would like to participate. Residents join in their doorway or we have chairs set up to maintain social distancing. Weather permitting, residents can use the porches or go outside to get fresh air. Staff will ask residents, time permitting or the resident can ask for assistance.Close
Q: Does Dr. Megerian still do monthly visits with residents?
Dr. Megerian continues to visit our residents at the Hearth. He is usually here every Monday morning but that is subject to change.Close
Q: What is the procedure if a staff member becomes ill?
Each staff member is screened prior to entering the building and upon leaving their shift. If the employee does not meet the screening they are asked to leave and contact their medical provider.Close
Q: What happens if a resident becomes ill?
If a resident becomes ill, all efforts are made to care for the resident here at the Hearth, if we cannot safely care for the resident, they will be sent to the hospital per the physician's order.Close
Q: Are the Patios clean?
All 4 patios have been cleaned and power washed. Social distance should be maintained with residents on the patios.Close
Q: Is the HVAC system safe?
Our HVAC system does not use HEPA filters. The filters are changed in the HVAC system per the manufacturer's recommendations. We do not have any negative air pressure rooms at the Hearth.Close
Q: Are staff under-reporting symptoms because they cannot afford to take time off?
All staff have been instructed to report any illness and not to report to work if sick. Staff are screened prior and after their shift. Liberty has allowed employees to go in the negative for time so that their paycheck will not be affected.Close
Q: Will you be testing all residents and staff?
On a daily basis we will continue to follow the guidance of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH).Close
Q: Are you doing antibody testing?
We are not doing antibody testing. There are many studies being conducted and to date there have been no reliable results for antibody testing. We will continue to follow CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines for testing.Close
Q: What are The Hearth's reopening plans?
Q: Can I visit my family member as a Compassionate Caregiver?
The Pennsylvania Department of Health has released guidance that includes information on Compassionate Caregiver visitation. Here is some important information for you that is included in the guidance:
Compassionate Care visitation is allowed in limited situations per CMS FAQs on Nursing Home Visitation. Care can be provided by Compassionate Caregivers if there are two or more documented “significant changes” in a resident’s condition. A significant change is defined in 42 CFR & 483.20(b)(2)(ii) as: A major decline or improvement in a resident’s status that: 1) will not normally resolve itself without intervention by staff or by implementing standard disease-related clinical interventions; the decline is considered “self-limiting…”, 2) impacts more than one area of the resident’s health status; and 3) requires interdisciplinary review and/or revision of the care plan.
The Hearth will contact the family of residents who may qualify to receive Compassionate Caregiver visitation to discuss options. If you feel that your family member living at The Hearth qualifies to receive Compassionate Caregiver visitation and would like to designate a Compassionate Caregiver for an assisted living resident please contact Dana O'Donnell, at [email protected]. Our clinical team will determine if Compassionate Caregiver visitation is appropriate based on the guidelines we have received.
Please be aware that the CMS FAQs state that they do not believe these visits should be routine and they should be allowed on a limited basis as an exception to restricting visitation.
We ask that you carefully consider your request as we all continue to partner in keeping COVID outbreaks controlled in our communities. Please remember that it only takes one positive case in a staff person or a resident to send us back to pre-opening plans that will limit dining, activities and visitation for all. We’ve been fortunate since this pandemic started in March, and we are all working to keep The Hearth at Drexel a safe and healthy place to live and work.Close