May 21 2020

COVID-19 News

Dear PCH Resident Families,

SUBJECT: Personal Care Home (PCH) On-site Outdoor Visitation during COVID-19

Across Canada, the risk that COVID-19 poses to the residents of personal care homes (PCHs) is clear. Efforts to prevent, quickly identify and contain “outbreaks” of COVID-19 are vital to protecting populations that are most vulnerable to serious outcomes from this virus. To date, Manitobans’ efforts have been effective in prevention of COVID-19 outbreaks in the province’s PCHs. Visitor restrictions, enhanced environmental cleaning and disinfecting practices, daily staff screening before staff enter the workplace, adherence to provincial personal protective equipment requirements and the implementation of a single-site PCH staffing model have been sequential and escalating steps in Manitoba’s response to COVID-19 within the province. Each preventive measure has involved significant consideration of the impact it would have on your loved ones.

We know that family and friends are integral to the overall health, well-being and quality of life of residents within PCHs. Balancing necessary preventative measures with maintaining the vital connections that residents have with family members and support systems has been at the heart of every stage of our response. However, while preventing the spread of this virus within our facilities remains a central priority, the likelihood that COVID-19 will be a part of our ‘new normal’ for a longer duration requires us to find a longer-term balance between preventative measures and the many benefits of ongoing interaction between residents and their loved ones.

Accordingly, this is to advise that, effective Friday, May 29, 2020 we will begin taking appointments for on-site, outdoor visits to start Monday, June 1st with our Personal Care Home Residents with the following considerations:

- Screening of all visitors must occur, including assessment for symptoms or known exposure to COVID-19 prior to entry. Restrictions will apply to visitors who have travelled outside of Manitoba within the past 14 days. No visitor shall be permitted if they have any cold/flu or other COVID-19 symptoms.

- All visitors must comply with Infection Prevention and Control measures. This includes strict hand hygiene and maintaining physical distancing (6 feet/2 meters apart) at all times.

Indoor visits remain suspended. Exceptions will continue to be made on a case-by-case basis as per existing guidance, e.g. visits for end of life reasons.

Off-property visits are not permitted given the risk to residents and to the facility associated with unknown nature of contacts, exposure and other required safety measures.

In order to help us ensure that this new opportunity presents the best experience for you and your loved one, please review the “What you Need to Know” Guideline. To coordinate your visit, please call 204-478-6208. Protecting the health and well-being of your loved ones and staff remains one of our top priorities. Regular assessment by public health officials of the impact and evaluation of the need for adjusted visitor restrictions will continue as developments evolve. Once again, thank you for your cooperation and understanding as we take every measure to protect you, your loved ones and our staff.

RHC Leadership Team

Personal Care Home On-Site Outdoor Visitation Guideline

What you Need to Know

• ‘Essential visitors’ are those deemed essential to the emotional wellbeing, health, and qualityof life of your loved one. In most cases, visitors should be close family and/or friends who have a clearly established pattern of involvement in providing care and support.

• All visits by essential visitors must be pre-booked, at minimum two days prior to the scheduled visit. To comply with physical distancing measures, sites may need to restrict the number of visits per time slot, in the visiting area.

• Visits for our general PCH Residents will be booked for a maximum of 30 minutes between the hours of 1-7 pm Monday-Friday and 1-5 pm Saturday and Sunday.

• For visits with our Special Needs Unit Residents, specific visitation hours and procedures will be discussed with you prior to the visit.

• A maximum of two essential visitors per Resident will be permitted at a time.

• A minor must be accompanied by an adult. • Pets are not permitted.

• Screening of all visitors will occur, including assessment for symptoms or known exposure to COVID-19 prior to the visit. Restrictions will apply to visitors who have travelled outside of Manitoba within the past 14 days. No visitor shall be permitted if they have any cold/flu or other COVID-19 symptoms.

• All visitors must comply with Infection Prevention and Control measures. This includes strict hand hygiene and maintaining physical distancing (6 feet/2 meters apart) at all times.

• Due to required infection control practices, food/beverages and items may not be brought for on-site outdoor visits

 • Access to on-site food/beverages and washroom facilities will not be available for visitors.

• Wearing of a non-medical mask during outdoor visits is not required, but is encouraged.

• Based on evaluation of risk as well as operational clinical judgement, the site may be unable to facilitate outdoor visits for certain residents.

• The site reserves the right to cancel visits due to inclement weather.

May 10th, 2020

To Our Riverview Health Centre Families and Friends,

Thank you for your ongoing support and patience during this challenging time. As you know, on March 17th visitor restrictions were implemented based on provincial public health direction. In order to protect our Patients, Residents and staff, we continue to adhere to this direction, except for our Patients and Residents receiving end of life care. We have not yet received word on when these visitation restrictions will be relaxed.

In the meantime, many of our families are taking advantage of regular phone calls, scheduled solarium window visits and virtual “face time” visits with their loved ones. Thanks to a generous donation from our RHC Foundation, each Patient/Resident unit is now equipped with a designated iPad to support increased virtual visits. If you are interested in scheduling a virtual visit, please reach out to your family member’s Patient Care Manager or Recreation Facilitator.

We continue to limit what items are accepted for delivery. As previously communicated, we are not allowing delivery of food, flowers, or other items that cannot be disinfected. All items delivered must arrive in hard plastic packaging that we are able to wipe down and disinfect.

Effective May 1st, at the requirement of public health officials, we implemented a single-site staffing model for Nursing and Support Staff working in licensed PCHs. This direction was put in place to further protect your loved one from the risk the virus poses to them. We are pleased to note that this directive has not had a negative impact on our staffing levels at Riverview.

Given all of the safety measures in place, we have been fortunate to date in that we currently have no outbreaks of illness among our Patients, Residents or staff. We would like to thank you all for your continued support and greatly appreciate your phone calls and emails expressing thanks and appreciation to our RHC team members working hard to keep our Patients and Residents safe and well cared for.

Thank you.
Sincerely, The RHC Senior Leadership Team

May 8th, 2020

Happy Mother's Day!

 Happy Mothers’ Day! At Riverview Health Centre, we know Mothers’ Day is important. We wish everyone could be together in person to celebrate. Sadly, this is not possible due to the provincial visiting restrictions in place during the COVID-19 pandemic. We miss you, and can’t wait until you are able to return to normal visiting!

In addition, due to the strict cleaning protocols we have in place for the safety of our patients, residents and staff, and the need to make sure we have enough cleaning supplies available for our patient and resident care areas, we are limited in our ability to accept deliveries. At this time we are not able to accept deliveries of food items or flowers or plants. Any items we are able to accept must be in hard plastic packaging that we are able to wipe down to disinfect. Our staff are working hard to be there to acknowledge and thank your mothers on your behalf, as best we can. Here are some of the things we are doing over the next few days:

• We are focusing as much time as possible on facilitating “virtual visiting” using i-Pads for FaceTime as well as setting up solarium visits through our front solarium windows. We thank the Riverview Health Centre Foundation for providing us with additional i-Pads just in time for Mothers’ Day!

• Our Recreation Facilitators and other staff are spending 1 on 1 time with our patients and residents, having meaningful conversations about motherhood to foster moments of special memories, inspiration and love.

• On Mothers’ Day Sunday, we will briefly lift our policy of “emergency only” paging, to provide a special Mothers’ Day greeting and play a special song in honour of all the mothers.

• There will be Mothers’ Day/Spring decorations up for everyone to enjoy.

• We are having a few very small group teas in rotation, with physical distancing and hand hygiene in place.

We know we cannot possibly replace you being here in person, but please know your mothers are being acknowledged and cared for on their special day and always.

April 27, 2020

A Message From Shared Health:

Attention: Families and Support Persons of Residents of Licensed Personal Care Homes

Across Manitoba, personal care homes and other long term care facilities have taken every possible step to decrease the risk of COVID-19 within our facilities. This has included strict infection and control precautions, enhanced cleaning protocols, visitor restriction, daily screening of staff before shift and the introduction of personal protective equitment.

Across Canada, the risk of COVID-19 poses to the residents of personal care homes is clear. Efforts to prevent, quickly identify and contain 'outbreaks' of COVID-19 are vital to protecting populations that are most vulnerable to serious illness and death from this virus.

For the safety of your loved ones, and at the requirement of public health officals, we are implementing a single-site staffing model for nursing and support staff working in licensed personal care homes effective May 1, 2020.

This change will limit the number of licensed personal care homes that nursing and support staff work in to one. 

We understand this change may be concerning to you and it is important that you understand it is being made to help protect your loved one from the risk this virus poses to them. We are committed to continuity of care and to minimizing the disruption and anxiety that it may cause for your loved one. 

It is our expectation that the dedicaton of the staff to a single site will not only limit the risk of exposure to your family member but may also increase the continuity of their care provider(s).

As we implement this new direction, we will carefully monitor staff levels, standards of care, ensure staff have appropriate personal protective equipment for the work they do, and contnue to enforce the other restrictions already in place to minimize the risks of an outbreak.

We understand you will have questions and we are committed to provide information as it becomes available.

We appreciate your understanding as we implement these elevated precautions to protect our residents, many of whom have underlying medical conditions that put them at greatest risk of becoming severely ill due to COVID-19.

   April 17th, 2020

We continue to be vigilant to ensure that we protect our patients, residents and staff. RHC continues to follow provincal direction to restrict visitation, with exceptions being made around end of life. You can trust that we will communicate with patient/resident's primary contact if there is a change in condition and health isues.

We implemented staff screening at the begining of each shift. All staff who provide direct patient/resident care during the course of their work are wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), which routinely includes masks and eye protection, and gloves and gowns as required. We thank our staff of their dedication nd discipline in ensuring they are safe and comply with the provincal guidelines so that they keep our patients, residents and their co-workers safe.

Daily routines for our patients and residents continue with some changes. There are no large group activities such as worship services, bingo or end of the monh birthdays due to provincal restrictionsons on the size of group gatherings. Recreation Facilitators continue to provide programming on the unit while ensuring social distancing and proper hand hygiene between contracts. They are conducting many one-on-one visitis with the residents to stimulate social and mental interactions and partnerning with Social Work and Spiritual Care to support virtual and solarium visits. On our rehab units, therapy is continuning in a one to one format, usually on the patient's unit or in their room.

Staff on the units continue to follow the patient/resident individual care plans and there should be no significant change for our patients and residents, and we will continue to do our best to provide excellent care while keeping everyone safe during this challenging time

We miss the families, volunteers, and all others who helped created a home-like environment. We continue to appreciate the support and commitment of everyone involved as we work through this pandemic.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question. Any questions specific to your loved one's health can be directed to the nursing staff on the units. Also, please visit the Shared Health Manitoba website for the most up to date and accurate information related to the management of the pandemic.

RHC Leadership Team

April 2nd, 2020

As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve in Manitoba, every preparation is underway and every precaution is being taken to ensure RHC is able to safely care for its patients, residents and staff.

Vistng Restrictions:
- All visitng has been suspended for the time being
- Exceptions will be made for end of life care on a case by case basis

Entrance Security:
- Entrance to the facility is limited to the main entrance and the south entrance
- Permitted visitors must use main entrance

Staff Screening:
- All staff are subject to a daily screening process to ensure they are healthy to provide care

Deliveries for Residents / Patients:
- RHC has put strict restrictions on most goods delivered to the Centre
- Anything delivered must be wipeable
- Food or flower deliveries are not permitted during this time

We thank you for your understanding as we work through this pandemic together.

For regular COVID-19 updates please visit: