COVID-19 FAQ

Last Updated: July 2, 2020

This FAQ will be updated continuously with the most current information and Shepherd’s Care policies and protocols as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves. Please refer back to this page frequently.

COVID-19

COVID-19

Is Shepherd’s Care restricting entry to its sites?

All staff, visitors, and contractors are required to complete a screening questionnaire and undergo a temperature check prior to entering any Shepherd’s Care facility. Our full visitation policy is available at https://www.shepherdscare.org/visiting-loved-ones/.

Is Shepherd’s Care restricting residents from leaving its sites?

Our strong advice is that all residents must refrain from leaving the site in order to minimize resident and staff exposure.

Care residents may leave the facility for a few hours without having to self-isolate upon return. Any resident who leaves more than 24 hours is required to self-isolate for 14 days upon return.

Any resident who leaves the facility is encouraged to leave only for essential appointments only and  utilize delivery services as much as possible. If you do leave the facility, please wear your mask and practice good hand hygiene. 

Can I take my loved one out for lunch or take them home?

Residents are permitted to leave the facility for under 24 hours without having to self-isolate for 14 days.

If you do, we encourage the resident to wear their mask  at all times. Any absence longer than 24 hours will require the resident to self-isolate for 14 days upon return.

How do you make sure your employees aren’t coming to work sick?

Our employees are health care professionals and our expectations as outlined by Alberta Health are that any employee who is symptomatic will refrain from coming to work and self-isolate. Our HR department is working with employees and the measures announced by the federal and provincial governments to ensure that employees affected by self-isolation or childcare are able to cope.

All staff are screened upon entry each day, which includes the AHS health  professional screening questionnaire as well as a temperature check. Staff are further required to complete a mid-shift self assessment. Any staff who are working at other sites are mandated to change clothes and shower before entering our site.

 

Are volunteers permitted to attend sites?

We have opened up our sites to designated essential volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering, please reach out to your Shepherd’s Care contact or Judy Miller, Volunteer Coordinator at jmiller@shepherdscare.org

We are always looking to connect with individuals who are interested in future  volunteering opportunities. Please see https://www.shepherdscare.org/get-involved/volunteer/ for more information.

Can I still come and collect my family member’s laundry?

For families that collect laundry, we strongly encourage you to take advantage of our in-house laundry service for a fee to minimize exposure. In the event you still wish to collect and clean your family member’s laundry, we will administer the AHS screening questionnaire and any other clinical screening measures deemed necessary, and if acceptable you may collect the laundry. Please reach out to the site manager to discuss your options.

Does Shepherd’s Care have any cases of COVID-19?

Our public disclosure on COVID-19 cases at Shepherd’s Care can be found on our disclosure page, which is here: https://www.shepherdscare.org/covid-19/covid-19-disclosure/

What other measures is Shepherd’s Care taking?

Shepherd’s Care has enacted its crisis management and business continuity protocols. We have a standing Emergency Operations Centre which meets weekly or as needed, and a weekly afternoon debrief with each site Director/Manager. Our President & CEO and clinical staff are in constant communication with provincial health authorities and monitoring information from the federal government and the World Health Organization to ensure that we are acting on the most current information and public health recommendations.

In addition to these standing daily meetings, we have undertaken a number of other measures, including:

  • Only designated essential visitors permitted at our independent living facilities.
  • Enhanced enforcement to ensure compliance with internal protocols as well as public health directives on self-quarantine.
  • Strict protocols for hairdressing and foot care services.
  • All routine and additional infection prevention and control practices were initiated immediately at our sites as outlined in our policies.
  • All symptomatic residents have been swabbed and we will continue to swab symptomatic residents for COVID-19 along with the seasonal influenza and respiratory viral assay.
  • All administrative staff who can work at home are provided the tools and resources to do so.
  • Dining room schedules are amended to accommodate multiple smaller seatings.
  • Enhanced cleaning with virucide cleaning solution at all our sites was initiated March 12, 2020 and will continue for the duration of the pandemic.

I have more questions specific to Shepherd’s Care’s handling of COVID-19.

Please direct all inquiries to info@shepherdscare.org. We respectfully ask that you refrain from calling, as our staff are focused on delivering care.

We will endeavour to answer all enquiries within 24 hours, however due to the increased volume of e-mails the wait may be longer.

Are new residents being accepted during the pandemic?

All new intake residents are required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival and any personal items coming into the facility will be sanitized.

Should any new residents move into one of the condo suites, we strongly encourage you to also self-isolate for 14 days.

Are you still permitting contractors into the buildings?

Contracting has been resumed. All contractors who enter our buildings undergo the same screening our staff does each day, and contractors are forbidden from interacting with residents.

How can I visit with my loved one?

Full visitation policy , including visitor education, is available here: https://www.shepherdscare.org/visiting-loved-ones/

We are also using Zoom to allow our residents to have face-to-face calls with their loved ones. Zoom is easy to use, free, and works on all devices and operating systems. Families are required to set up a free account, and then all they have to do is arrange a time and let our staff know your Zoom ID. The full instructions can be found here.

You can also continue to use Skype, FaceTime, or arrange a time to visit on the phone.

How would I know if my loved one was exposed to COIVD-19?

When there is a positive case of COVID-19 identified, we proactively identify any staff or resident that was in contact with that individual going back two days before the COVID-19 positive individual became symptomatic. Those who were potentially exposed are asked to self-isolate for 14 days and monitor themselves for any symptoms. Full symptom list available on the Government of Alberta’s website here. If your loved one develops any of the symptoms, please call 811 and notify Shepherd’s Care immediately. 

Public health protocol is that only individuals who are symptomatic will be swabbed for COVID-19. Individuals who are on isolation because of a potential exposure who are not symptomatic will not be swabbed.

Can I get my loved one tested for COVID-19 now?

Alberta Health Services is permitted asymptomatic testing of any Albertan who wants it. You can scheudle the testing online at https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16944.aspx or by calling 811.

In May, all residents of Shepherd’s Care Foundation were tested for COVID-19. We have no further plans for mass asymptomatic testing at this time.

All symptomatic residents are isolated and tested immediately for COVID-19.