Download the latest Family Update as a PDF.
PMMA strongly encourages all eligible residents and employees to carefully consider what these vaccinations will mean for themselves and our PMMA communities. As front-line providers of senior care services, our employees are among those at the greatest risk of COVID-19 infection, and our residents are at the greatest risk of serious illness or death if they are infected.
The Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require a two-step process consisting of two shots to get the most protection from the virus. The first shot starts the process of building immunity protection within the body, with a second dose required a few weeks later to provide the maximum amount of protection available.
Booster shots are recommended eight months after completing the original vaccine regimen.
A federal mandate requiring vaccination for all staff working in nursing homes that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding has been announced. Details will be forthcoming in Fall 2021. PMMA has launched a Why Vax? campaign encouraging employees to carefully consider the importance of receiving the vaccine to protect the residents and themselves.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and state guidelines allow communities to establish protocols for visitation.
Both indoor and outdoor visitation is supported. Outdoor visitation is preferred whenever possible. All visitation is subject to screening and precautions, which includes wearing face coverings or masks, following good hygiene practices, and answering COVID-19 risk questions.
Visits do not have to be scheduled, but visitors should check in and complete screening before moving through the community. Visitors are strongly encouraged to follow the most direct route to the visitation area or the residence they are visiting.
Resident safety always comes first. Based on the recommendations from the CDC and CMS, outdoor visitation will be preferred when weather permits. Outdoor visitation provides the best ventilation and opportunity to maintain safe social distances during visitation. It also provides the most locations for residents and families to meet together.
Please be vigilant in self-monitoring for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. Visit the CDC website and check your symptoms with the online Self-Checker available on the website.
When you visit our communities, you are expected to adhere to safety practices and take necessary precautions to protect our residents and employees.
For more guidance from the CDC on visiting senior living communities, view CDC.gov.
Our campus screens employees at the beginning of their shifts upon entering the community and before the employees have had any direct contact with residents. These screening measures include taking staff temperatures and asking a set of questions about their health status and COVID-19 exposure risks and review a list of COVID-19 symptoms.
Employees who have a fever or report feeling unwell are not allowed to work and are asked to get tested for COVID-19 if they have symptoms of the disease. These measures continue to be updated as guidance changes. We encourage all staff members to follow CDC guidelines and best practices as these are continually updated.
Employees who test positive remain in isolation until cleared to work by the health department. We follow CDC and KDHE guidelines for when an employee may return to work. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic employees may return to work when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of the employee’s fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the employee’s symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Asymptomatic positive employees will quarantine for at least 10 days. Upon the employee’s return to work, we follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has mandated surveillance testing of our staff. Surveillance testing requires all employees, agency employees, volunteers, hospice, lab and therapy providers at our campus to be tested on a frequency determined by our county’s COVID-19 testing positivity rate. Based on our county positivity rate for COVID-19 tests, our campus is testing staff once a week.
Residents who tested positive are placed in COVID-19 isolation and cared for by designated staff members. We follow CDC and KDHE guidelines for when the residents may come out of isolation. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic residents may come out of isolation when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of the resident’s fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the resident’s symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. If asymptomatic, the residents will remain in isolation for at least 10 days. Designated team members are following doctor’s orders for treatment protocols and following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) infection prevention protocols.
We continue to stay current with preventive measures in accordance with the CMS/CDC guidelines and best practices. We strongly encourage all residents to shelter in place and adhere to the precautions we provided.
Follow these basic safety precautions to protect yourself and others and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Wear a mask or cloth face covering. Maintain adequate social distance between yourself and others who do not live with you. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand gel. Residents should limit trips off campus, and family members are encouraged to avoid crowds.
Please be vigilant in self-monitoring for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. Visit the CDC website and check your symptoms with the online Self-Checker available here.