fbpx

Good News In The Midst Of COVID-19 From Russ Peterson, CEO Of Nye Health Services

 

I want to share some good news about the response to COVID-19. This virus has turned our world upside down and much of the news coverage is negative, depressing and frightening. Health care workers on nursing facility and assisted living campuses have been asked to shoulder the responsibility to protect the most vulnerable, our elderly.

You are the unsung heroes in this fight, who come to work every day because you are passionate about protecting our residents. You leave your families at home, don your masks, get your temperatures taken, and go into battle armed with a bottle of sanitizer. You are willing to have swabs shoved up your noses every week or more. You do this because you care about our residents while also quietly hoping that you will not be the person who accidentally brings the virus on campus. You deserve to have a light shown on you to celebrate your hard work.

You make a difference and significantly impact the lives of our elders. You improvise to bring joy and laughter to our residents who have not hugged family and friends for many months, you cry with residents and families when illness and death occurs, and you remain committed to protecting yourselves and your family when you are off work so as to not contract the virus. You are warriors, fighting this battle for over 6 months with no near end in sight. An average person does not take on this kind of work, this requires a special person who is strong and committed. I am humbled by your valiant efforts every day.

COVID 19 is an insidious virus that can find its way onto any campus through individuals who are positive but asymptomatic and may be on a campus before the next round of testing occurs. You have been successful at minimizing COVID occurring on our campuses and aggressive at managing it when it occasionally has occurred. In those rare occurrences, I have seen the spirits of our team members sink when a person is diagnosed with COVID, but your resilience to rise to the occasion is awe-inspiring. “We’ve got this,” “COVID is not going to get the better of us,” are rallying cries I hear as you bravely face each day.

This is heroic work, this is honorable work, this is impactful work, this is stressful work. I want to personally thank you for your on-going dedication to this calling. You are good news in the midst of this devastating virus.

Russ Peterson
CEO
Nye Health Services

 

 

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

September and still in the throes of the worse pandemic in our lifetime.   Some experts are saying that we are entering into the second wave of COVID, which is likely to be more significant that the first wave.  I would tend to agree with that as we are seeing an increase in positive cases in the communities where we are located and a slight uptick in team members testing positive.  We realize that our team members have a life outside of the campus and we encourage them to be extremely diligent when they are off work to protect themselves from getting the virus because we know that if the virus gets on a campus, it is likely to be an asymptomatic team member who will bring it in.

You have read or heard about the stringent infection control processes we have in place.  When a suspected or positive COVID test result occurs we immediately put that campus or area of the campus into isolation protocol until we can determine if it is truly a positive case and the extent of any exposure.  One challenge we face is that we are finding a fairly high false positive rate on the testing we are doing using the machines that were provided to us by the Federal government. For this reason, backup tests are utilized to verify results.  As you know, when there is a confirmed positive case, you have been notified and updated on the situation.

As this battle has gone on, we are seeing the impact on the psycho-social wellbeing of our residents and families.  We know it has been so hard to not be able to visit face-to-face, hug your loved one, or share a cup of coffee.  It breaks our heart to see that too.  Our team members have been doing everything they can to make life special for our residents.  We have had ice cream carts going down the hall, socially distanced carnivals, drive-thru parades, outdoor concerts, and themed dress-up days for our residents and team members.

As we go forward, we are currently doing much more frequent testing based upon the community rate of positive cases.  We continue to explore ways to positively impact each resident’s life, we are providing as much access as we can to family members, and reinforcing the infection control measures that are still critically important to protect the lives of our residents.

I want to thank the family members of our residents for their understanding and kindness extended to us.  Not only has this been difficult on you but this has been a very tough battle for our team members.  They have been warriors who go into battle every day armed with their mask, thermometer, and sanitizer because they believe in our mission and care about the residents they serve.  I encourage them that we will emerge triumphant over this scourge.

The key to manage this virus is better therapeutic medication and effective vaccines.  They are on the horizon, hopefully sooner than later.  My friends have asked how long this will last.   I am now telling them that by next March we will have a much better handle on this virus.  Until then we will foremost protect the safety of our residents to the best of our ability and secondly, do everything we can to promote the quality of life of our residents.

Thank you again for your patience, grace and trust in us as we care for your loved one.

If you have questions, please contact the campus administration directly or send your questions to our COVID email: covid@nyehealthservices.com. You can also follow us on Facebook.

 

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

COVID-19 Update on Easing Restrictions from Nye Health Services VP of Operations, Kristin Harris

I wanted to reach out to our residents, family members, team members, and friends, to say thank you! It takes all of us to fight this COVID-19 battle and we truly could not do it without you. 

We are very excited to begin working through the COVID-19 phasing guidance that we received from the Department of Health and Human Services to ease the restrictions on our campuses. We are actively in the process of doing that. We need to obtain baseline testing as there are expectations we need to meet to move forward with the phasing. We also are working on a plan for, how we are going to ease the restrictions on our campuses and still maintain the safety for our residents as COVID-19 is still a significant risk. 

We can’t thank you enough for all of your support. We are so very proud of all of our team members and the work they have done to protect our residents. We could not do this without you! We are a family. We are the Nye Family.

If you have questions, please contact the campus administration directly or send your questions to our COVID email: covid@nyehealthservices.com. You can also follow us on Facebook.  

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

COVID-19 Update on Restrictions from Nye Health Services VP of Operations, Kristin Harris

First of all, I want to say thank you to all of our residents and family members. Thank you for your patience, your trust and your continued support. We have been continuously learning, implementing changes and modifying processes to meet the Centers for Disease Control and Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) expectations for management of Covid-19 in long term care facilities. This is an invisible enemy that has created anxiety, fear, and frustration. We have found ourselves in the most difficult situation, a tug of war over safety from the virus, and safety from the extreme toll these restrictions have put on our residents, family members, and team members. You have locked arms and partnered with us, and we will forever be grateful. I continue to be amazed by our teams. Their selfless dedication to our residents is inspiring and gives me so much hope and confidence, and has united us in an unbelievable way.

We are excited to share that the guidelines for long term care facilities to begin relaxing restrictions, including specific criteria a facility must meet in order to move forward. We are receiving questions about our plans to open up the campuses and are responding to many of those in this message. Please be aware that each campus may have differing levels of ability to open up which will be addressed by the specific campuses.

We are regulated by DHHS on our skilled care and assisted living campuses and they define the process by which we can move forward, and multiple factors will influence this process and timeline. All long-term care facilities are currently in Phase 1, with the ability to complete the following tasks and be eligible to move into Phase 2. We have been internally defining our processes for Phase 2, so we will be ready to go when we get approval from DHHS. We will be providing that information to the families and residents of the campus when we know a specific date that we can move forward.

First, the county a facility is in must be able to move forward with their directed health measures. Second, a facility must not have any positive Covid-19 residents or team members, and must have a plan to complete baseline testing of team members resulting in all negative results. Please be aware that a positive Covid-19 result amongst a resident or team member may require us to again restrict visitors and group activities, regardless of the phase we are in.

We look forward to the opportunity for nursing facilities and assisted living facilities to open up in phases. It has been a long several months and we are anxious to ease restrictions while keeping our residents and team members safe. We strive to keep communication transparent and prioritize clarity and responsiveness. We know this pandemic has caused us to try and communicate in different ways. We will be sending out a resident and family survey specific to the pandemic management and responsiveness, and we would greatly appreciate you feedback. It will specifically help us to modify and prioritize areas of focus and improvement moving forward. Please take the time to complete the survey and share your feedback with us.

We know everyone is anxious to move forward, as are we, but please be patient as we comply with the regulations that DHHS requires of us. As I said in the beginning, some of our campuses will be able to open up sooner than others, and those campuses will communicate those details. 

If you have questions, please contact the campus administration directly or send your questions to our COVID email: covid@nyehealthservices.com. You can also follow us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services VP of Operations, Kristin Harris

Thank you to all of our residents, family members, team members and their family members. We can’t express enough our appreciation to each of you for all of the personalized gifts and support. I want to make sure that everyone is aware that at this time we are continuing to be aggressively proactive with our prevention measures, and will not be making any changes to our current guidelines related to visitation, and will continue with no communal dining or communal activity programming. We are not letting our guard down at all, and we will continue prioritizing creative ways to keep people connected and engaged.

One thing that I want to highlight is that while this situation has been one of the most difficult we’ve ever navigated, we have seen such a phenomenal unification of support and effort. One of our core company values is to Be United. We have united as a team with each other, and locked arms to fight against this invisible enemy. The way our residents and family members have locked arms with us has been inspiring and motivating, and provided us with the continued momentum needed to stay aggressive! Thank you, we love you and appreciate you.

If you have questions, please contact the campus administration directly or send your questions to our COVID email: covid@nyehealthservices.com. You can also follow us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

COVID-19 Update from Nye Health Services CEO, Russ Peterson

With some of the recent media surrounding nursing facilities and assisted living, I wanted to speak directly to you.  We take care of some of the most vulnerable individuals: older adults with medical complications.  Our Nye campuses have so many committed and caring individuals, helping fight the fight. This is not always easy for them, but they show up every day, faithfully donning their masks and providing care of our residents.

Despite their heroic efforts we have not been able to keep COVID off all our campuses.  When it has surfaced in either a team member or resident, our team has jumped into action, immediately notifying all residents, their responsible family member, notifying the Department of Health and Human Services and the area Health Department.  We have been and continue to diligently follow their recommendations to best protect our residents.  These diligent efforts have helped to minimize the spread of the virus on the campuses that have had it and we know their actions are saving lives.

We know it is also difficult on family members who have not been able to see and hug loved ones for a couple of months.  We wish that could be different and know we will do all we can to create opportunities for you to connect with your loved one.  The health and safety of our residents and team members is our greatest concern.  We will continue to keep you updated with any information about COVID-19 that could impact the health and well-being of our residents and team members.

Recently CMS has been discussing recommendations on how and when nursing facilities and assisted living campuses can open up and allow visitors back in.  We hope that this can occur sooner than later, but our decisions will be guided by balancing the safety of our resident’s and their need to interact with their loved ones.  At this time we don’t have a definitive plan but as things evolve, we will keep you informed.  We want to thank you for your patience and understanding through these difficult times.

If you have questions, please contact the campus administration directly or send your questions to our COVID email: covid@nyehealthservices.com. You can also follow us on Facebook.