November 19, 2020
The holiday season is upon us, and here at Gracious Living ADHCC the season looks a little different this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. We are still thanking the Lord for the hedge of protection he has kept around our participants and our facility. We are asking that staff; participants and their families decide if they will limit holiday festivities to their households or are inviting extended family with precautions.
Please understand that your decisions during this season may impact others at Gracious Living greatly. Please advise Gracious Living’s staff of your holiday plans to travel or receive guests from outside of your immediate family or the region. If you choose to travel or receive guest from outside of your immediate family or the region, please schedule your rapid Covid-19 testing prior to your return to Gracious Living ADHCC.
For those that celebrate with others, the CDC has guidance to reduce the chance of spreading COVID-19. The CDC recommends wearing a mask over your nose and mouth except when eating and drinking. Individuals should maintain six feet of distance from people who they do not live with, especially people who are at higher risk for severe COVID-19 illness. Other suggestions include small outdoor meals with family and friends, limiting the number of guests, using single-use options like plastic utensils, and opening windows for indoor meals.
North Carolina and other states have already seen coronavirus cases and hospitalizations increase ahead of the holiday season. This week Gov. Roy Cooper said the situation in North Carolina is not as dire as in other U.S. states but echoes North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary, Mandy Cohen’s recommendations, "If you're going to travel or get together, plan ahead," Cohen said. "Think about getting a COVID-19 test three or four days ahead of time. A test can help you know if you have COVID-19, even if you do not have symptoms. "Tests can miss some infections, she warned. "It's not a free pass, so you still need to wear your mask and practice all the 3Ws. — wearing a face mask, waiting 6-feet apart and washing hands frequently."
Continue to pray for and with us. Now is a time to be in prayer not only for protection but for all involved in this time. Pray for a cure and for vaccines to be made so that this virus will not claim another life. Advancements are being made each day and praying for each step of the process is needed. We live in an age where we are able to look back at worldwide illness that could easily be eradicated today because of discoveries in modern medicine, and in such we have the opportunity to pray for the Lord to reveal to scientists and doctors what is needed to wipe coronavirus from the face of the earth so that it is a distant memory very soon. Relying on His wisdom through inspiration is crucial to those on the search for a cure.
Yours in service,
Michele D. Allgood, Certified Dementia Practitioner, Program Director
October 12, 2020
It is fall and normally our time to talk about “fall and flu” prevention. We will begin a fall prevention series here at the center and will send home exercises and information regarding fall prevention. On October 7th Walgreen’s pharmacist, Bhasker Tripathi, provided flu shots to all of those that wished to receive them. This season we are ahead of the “flu” talk since we are already washing hands, physically distancing, and wearing masks in public to thwart Covid-19 spread. We have had a complete hedge of protection from the Lord with zero (0) Covid-19 cases.
It will be important that we continue to be vigilant in our homes during this upcoming holiday season.
Mecklenburg County Public Health Director, Gibbie Harris, reported that since early August, county public health officials have connected positive coronavirus cases to at least 97 family gatherings, 24 wedding-related events, 14 funerals and 23 religious events at places of worship.
"Family gatherings are the largest number where we've actually seen people become positive within 14 days of the event," Harris said. "We have a tendency to believe that we are safe within our family, regardless of whether these are individuals that we've been spending time with," she said. "If you're bringing people together around holidays, you need to be conscious of the fact that if these are individuals that you don't live with and that you normally are not spending time with, you need to consider wearing your mask and social distancing."
Let’s continue to pray that all shall be “safe”, “receive love” and be “thankful unto the Lord”!
Yours in service,
Michele D. Allgood, Certified Dementia Practitioner
June 26, 2020
On June 24, 2020, Governor Roy Cooper extended Phase 2 and implemented new “masks in public” measures. Gracious Living ADHCC is utilizing the information provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Department of Health and Human Services (CDC and DHHS) regarding the Coronavirus Disease 2019) (Covid-19) and will continue to monitor the CDC and DHHS for updates. Our current policies will remain in place; see below:
Employees and participants who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness (i.e. cough, shortness of breath, temperature above 100.4 F must stay at home and not visit Gracious Living ADHCC until they are free of fever and any other Covid-19 symptoms for at least 72 hours, without the use of fever reducing or other symptom altering medications (i.e. cough suppressants,) Employees and participants must notify the Program Director via phone if they are sick and not able to report to work or attend Gracious Living ADHCC. We are adamant that if you are sick with Covid-19 symptoms, you must stay at home!
Employees or participants appearing to have acute respiratory symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath, fever) upon arrival to Gracious Living or who become sick during the day will be sent home immediately. Employees or participants that have been exposed and/or maintained close contact with a known positive Covid-19 individual may be sent home. To protect all employees and participants, a doctor’s note and /or a negative /Covid-19 test result may be required before an employee would be eligible to return to work.
Gracious Living ADHCC urges employees and participants to regularly wash their hands with soap and water. This is the single most important thing we can do to prevent the spread of any virus. Hand sanitizer is being provided; however, it should not be a substitute for proper hand washing.
Employees and participants should cover their mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or an elbow or shoulder should you not be near a tissue).
We will maintain 6ft. between ourselves and others and will not congregate. If we are doing anything that does not allow us to keep a 6ft. distance way from others, we are then required to wear a face covering. (i.e. when performing personal care) Many participants are afforded an exception and are not required to don face coverings per the executive order. “ Should not wear a Face Covering due to any medical or behavioral condition or disability (including, but not limited to, any person who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious or incapacitated, or is otherwise unable to put on or remove the face covering without assistance);”
Gracious Living ADHCC has issued safety protocols to include social distancing, cleaning checklists, continuous communications, and educational guidance. Employees and participants should continue to follow the protocols in place. (i.e. cleaning chair arms and tabletops with sanitizing spray after sneezing or coughing noted, vigilant cleaning throughout the day and fogging chairs, rails, floors once participants leave an area).
We will continue to provide an essential place where our participants may safely interact while we continue to fight social isolation and the cognitive "slide".
Interesting article from New Hampshire: http://indepthnh.org/2020/06/09/families-hope-adult-care-centers-reopen-soon/
Yours in service,
Michele Allgood, CDP, Program Director
May 6, 2020
First, I would like to give out a couple of very special "thank you's". To the staff of Gracious Living ADHCC, thank you for serving through thick and thin. We carry the responsibility—especially right now—to find ways to make a positive difference in other people’s lives and we have. In the process, we have surely enriched our own. The purpose, love and socialization that our participants receive from you daily enhances their lives. Social isolation can be very damaging.
Thank you to the caregivers at home with their loved ones. Being at home with your loved one, working or not, may seem to be difficult right now, but I am here to tell you that we can get through this whole thing and come out on the other side better than we are now. We’ve been through hard times before; getting an unfavorable diagnosis or just the pain of watching your loved one slipping into their new reality. We’re going to be okay. I choose to be a bearer of hope. Join me, you can be a bearer of hope, too.
Yesterday, NC Governor, Roy Cooper indicated that the State of NC will be entering phase one of "Staying ahead of the curve". NC is flattening the curve, Covid-like syndromic cases are decreasing, the number of positive tests are decreasing, and hospitalizations are decreasing or sustaining. When we enter into phase 2 we should also see the number of cases decreasing or sustaining. With the continued positive results and with the trends mostly decreasing we are allowing participants to responsibly re-enter Gracious Living ADHCC.
On Monday, May 11, 2020 we will begin to welcome back participants whose families chose to shelter at home and new enrollees. We will continue to practice screenings upon entrance, social distancing, hand washing, good hygiene, and vigilant sanitation. Gracious Living ADHCC has the additional screening measures in place so that we all remain healthy. We do understand that covid-19 can be deadly, especially for our population. The population we serve is the very reason that we have always been very vigilant about keeping a sterile, clean environment so that no viral or bacterial disease can infiltrate our facility.
As always, we ask that you join us in praying for a continued hedge of protection over our center, participants, staff, and the world!
Take care, be safe, and stay healthy!
Yours in service,
Michele Allgood, Certified Dementia Practitioner
April 8, 2020
We are committed to putting our people first, staff and participants. With COVID-19 officially listed as a pandemic and with so much yet to understand, we wanted to take a moment to share our latest thinking on how Gracious Living ADHCC will adapt its practices to ensure that we continue to deliver against our participants’ expectations, while also making decisions in a thoughtful manner that prioritizes the safety of our entire team. (caregiver +participant +staff)
Disclaimer: This document reflects our best knowledge at the time of writing and will be continually updated to incorporate new learnings as they surface. These guidelines are introduced to assist us in reducing exposure and transmission of a range of illnesses, including novel corona-virus. During this time, we are requesting and emphasizing:
Communication with the staff of Gracious Living ADHCC is very important. Please inform us if you need help or guidance in any way during these turbulent times.
We ask that you make responsible decisions in your personal life, avoiding concerts, sporting events, sick individuals, non-essential travel and other large public gatherings.
The participants that have been in attendance during March 2020 may continue to attend on a regular basis, however, we are asking those that have not been in attendance regularly to remain at home until at least May 4, 2020. We will reassess at that time. This will allow us to continue to serve those that need our services and do not have other options and to continue to control the social distancing, vital monitoring, sanitizing and HEPA air purifying. When the participants that have been at home re-enter our facility we will reassess them to determine their new "baseline" and our current environment is not conducive to an influx of assessments. We certainly cannot wait to see each of you return to the center, however, now is not the time to do so.
Pray without ceasing for this world. Ephesians 6:12 tells us that we “wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in heavenly places.” Covid -19 is from an unseen viral world that needs a host to survive in as a virus does not have an original life form of its own. Pray that our land be healed, allow the Holy Spirit to indwell and walk in faith. We will get through this. Resources available to you during this time may be found at: https://www.mecknc.gov/HHS/Pages/Seniors.aspx.
Of course, we will continue to monitor incoming COVID-19 updates from the CDC, Health and Human Services, WHO, and other authorities. We thank you for your understanding and patience.
Yours in service,
Michele Allgood, Certified Dementia Practitioner, Program Director
March 24, 2020
Many of you are aware of the "stay at home" order issued for Mecklenburg County residents. The order will go into effect on Thursday, March 26 at 8:00 a.m. and will remain in effect for the next 21 days.
The order was announced Tuesday afternoon by Mecklenburg County Public Health Director, Gibbie Harris during the Board of County Commissioners Budget and Public Policy meeting.
The order will require County residents to remain in their homes for the next 21 days as part of an attempt to reduce the number of new COVID-19 infections within the County. Exceptions will be allowed for those seeking medical treatment, buying food or exercising outdoors.
Essential workers, including hospital and medical staff, pharmacy employees, law enforcement, firefighters, EMS Agency (MEDIC), some government employees and food service and grocery store employees will be allowed to travel to work.
The order will be enforced by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.
The order will not prohibit restaurants from providing take out or delivery options. It also does not prohibit daycares, homeless shelters and government agencies from operating.
Gracious Living ADHCC is considered an essential service (human services operation) in the community and will continue to be open to service as long as we are needed. Should you decide to keep your loved one at home please call, 704-997-5032 or email, email@example.com. Please keep in mind for those family members that may have a diagnosis of dementia; anxiety is already a very "real" part of their daily lives; do not add to it. Allow them to view news reports sparingly, do not share your "fears" with them, and enjoy your time together!
Yours in service,
Michele D. Allgood, CDP, Program Director
March 15, 2020
We know everyone is concerned about the COVID-19 outbreak and the impacts the virus may have on our daily lives. We take the health and safety of our participants, staff, and community very seriously. As such, we are taking precautions to do our part in mitigating the spread of COVID-19. Here are the things we want you to know.
Gracious Living ADHCC is open for business, and we are confident that our facility and practices are safe. We serve a very special community population and if we were to close our doors, we could place some in our population, needing care, in compromised situations. We will continue to serve our purpose.
We are being extra vigilant with maintaining a sanitary environment in our facility and ensuring our staff members have what they need to stay healthy. We are continuing to use what we have found to be best practices to reduce the spread of communicable diseases. In addition to continuing to sanitize surfaces regularly throughout the day and encouraging good hand washing practices, we are continuing to:
· Remove staff members and participants from the schedule and requesting they contact their physician if they are showing COVID-19 symptoms. (or any other communicable disease)
· Require every person on the premise to wash their hands for a minimum of 20 seconds upon arrival to Gracious Living ADHCC.
· Maintain social distancing measures and performing temperature and respiratory health screenings.
· Require participants and staff members to continue frequent and thorough hand washing throughout the day.
· Remind staff members and participants to avoid touching both the participant’s face and his/her own face with unwashed hands.
· Provide staff members personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves and masks, as necessary.
In an abundance of caution, we have added five brief questions to our morning intake process to aid us in the COVID-19 screening of all participants and caregivers.
1. Do you have or does anyone in your household have a new/worse cough or shortness of breath?
2. Are you feeling feverish, or have you had shakes or chills in the last 24 hours?
3. Have you traveled in the last 14 days to Iran or the Hubei province, China, Italy, Japan, Singapore or South Korea?
4. Have you had close contact with a confirmed or probable case of someone with coronavirus?
5. Have you had close contact with a person with acute respiratory illness who has been to Iran, China, Italy, Japan, Singapore or South Korea within 14 days prior to their illness onset?
We appreciate your understanding as this situation evolves. We must all do our part to keep ourselves, our families, and our communities healthy, and we sincerely hope everyone is able to resume their normal lives soon. Updates will be posted with any new information and as always don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have questions.
We’ll get through this together!
Yours in service,
Michele D. Allgood, Certified Dementia Practitioner, Program Director