Today we are letting you know about visitation updates as a result of steps the Province of BC is taking to reduce transmission of the COVID-19 Omicron variant, to help protect the people who live and work in long term care homes. Our priority continues to be the health and wellbeing of your loved ones, and of our team members.
What you need to know
- Essential and End of Life Visitors
Effective January 1, 2022, as directed by an Order from Dr. Bonnie Henry, we restricted visitation to our Care Homes to essential and end of life visits only.
- Essential visits have strict guidelines and are included as part of an Essential Visit Care Plan for a resident. If your loved one has an essential need that cannot be met without an essential visit, you will be contacted by the Social Worker or Care Manager. Essential visits are limited to one person at a time.
- End of life visits may include more than one person at a time, and will be arranged with the Social Worker and Care Manager when needed.
- Single Designated Social Visitors
On January 4, 2022, Dr. Bonnie Henry announced that each resident may also receive visits from a single designated social visitor. For clarity, a single designated social visitor is one visitor for each resident. The single designated social visitor is always the same person and cannot be switched.
Please note: there are specific requirements for these visits to take place, and they have not started yet. Single designated social visits will begin as soon as we receive COVID-19 rapid tests from Island Health. We appreciate your patience.
- COVID-19 Rapid Tests
All visitors will need to have a rapid COVID-19 test that is negative before being permitted entry to the Home. This rapid test will happen at the Care Home. We are currently waiting for the rapid test kits to arrive from Island Health. Essential and end-of-life visits may continue now, without testing. Single designated social visits will begin once we have the tests, and we have had opportunity to train our Home Screeners about how to conduct these tests.
- Please note that all visitors are required to follow current COVID-19 protocols, including wearing a mask at all times, and should visit with their loved one in his or her room.
We understand how important it is for you and your loved one to have an in-person visit. We are doing our best to balance all Provincial Health requirements with the resources we have available to us. We will communicate with you as we have more information available. Meanwhile, here are answers to some questions you might have.
- How do I know if I’m a single designated social visitor?
- You may previously have been established as a single designated social visitor. If this is the case, we will have your information on file.
- If you were a single designated social visitor in July 2020, but can no longer fulfil this role, or need to make a change, please contact your Care Home.
- If your loved one is new to Broadmead Care, or if there is no single designated social visitor on file, the resident will be asked to choose one.
- If the resident is not able to choose, the Social Worker or Care Manager will be in touch with the next of kin to identify the single designated social visitor.
- When can I visit?
We have not yet received the rapid test kits from Island Health, so we are not certain when we can accept single designated social visitors. We anticipate receiving the rapid kits next week, and will communicate with you when we are ready to welcome single designated social visitors. Appointments will be needed so that every resident has the opportunity to enjoy time visiting in person. Visits will be available once weekly for each resident.
- How do I visit?
Single designated social visitors will need to schedule visits to allow adequate time for COVID-19 testing, which will take approximately 20 minutes. When single designated social visits begin, you will call Reception at your Care Home to schedule an appointment to see your loved one.
- What does the COVID-19 testing involve?
We have not yet received the rapid test kits from Island Health so are unable to provide details. These rapid tests will be conducted at the Care Home. We will provide more information when we know more about the rapid test process. (MY ADDITION – IT WASN’T IN BRENDA’S)
- How long can I spend with my loved one?
There is no limit to the length of time you can spend with your loved one. We recommend using this time to connect with other family members via your mobile device or iPad. Please ensure you wear your mask at all times.
- Is there any other way I can stay in touch?
Yes! Please visit our Keep Connected webpage (accessible through a button on our home page, or by typing www.broadmeadcare.com/send-a-message in your browser), through which you may upload messages, photos, or videos for your loved one. We will share them with him or her as soon as we can.
Because information is changing so quickly, we will reinstate our weekly communications to you while under these current Provincial Health Orders. We may also send communications to you as the need arises. You will receive an email communication from us regarding COVID-19 on Wednesday of each week.
As always, we are grateful for the ways you, your loved ones, and our team members pull together to keep our communities of care safe. We appreciate your understanding and patience as we await rapid tests and information from the Ministry of Health and Island Health, and as we get our plans in place.