To know how GOLDEN STRANDS ensures the safety of residents and staff amid the COVID-19 pandemic, here is a letter from Dr. Josephine Guerrero, Resident Medical Director.

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To the families of our residents of Golden Strands:

We hope this finds you well.

Allow us to provide you with some guidelines being observed at the facility.

A) Daily Endorsements/Tele-consultation

Since the quarantine started, as is our usual practice, the caregivers have been giving daily updates to our resident geriatrician on the status of all residents – including their vital signs, food and fluid intake, toileting activities and any complaint/symptom that they currently have. If needed, our caregivers go on a video call for our resident geriatrician to closely examine the resident and electronic prescriptions have been provided. Procedures for the conduct of these tele-consults and telemedicine are in accordance with guidelines/requirements issued to physicians during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Physical visits by our resident physician will resume when it is safe to do so.

B) Continuity of Care with Attending Doctors

We understand the need for our residents to see their attending doctors for their check-ups. During this time, patients are encouraged to do tele-consults and telemedicine with their doctors as much as possible.

If a resident needs to be brought out (for medical purposes ONLY), we suggest the following:

1. Check with your doctor for setting of appointment to their clinic (or with diagnostic clinics for the schedule of laboratory tests and procedures) and verify protocols of their institution. (Each hospital/clinic has their own protocol for which clinics are open, designated waiting areas for patients, how many patients can come at a time, etc.)

2. Once an appointment is confirmed, inform our facility manager.

3. Arrange for transportation and accompanying relative/designated care-provider for our resident.
(Please take note that our caregivers will not be allowed to leave the facility to minimize their risk of exposure and the risk to our other residents).

4. On the day of the check-up, please make sure to provide our resident with face mask, face shield, and if possible, a hospital-gown or any light-material drape that can be used to cover our resident. (This will serve as the resident’s “PPE”. A light long-sleeved jacket with front zipper and pants will do.)

5. Our caregiver will be brought out to the facility’s garage on a wheelchair. Before hand-over to the accompanying relative, hand disinfection should be done. The receiving or accompanying relative should also be wearing a face mask and face shield.

6. During transport and check-up, frequent hand sanitation of both resident and accompanying relative should be observed.

7. Upon completion of the check up or procedure, the resident should be brought back immediately to the facility. Bringing the resident to other places is prohibited.

8. When the patient is back at the facility, the patient will be received by the caregiver also at the garage. Hand sanitation will be done prior to turn-over. Disinfection and sanitation of all things coming from outside (medicines, prescription, supplies, resident’s footwear) will be immediately done. The resident’s clothes will be changed immediately and cleansing/bathing will be done before the resident is brought back to her or his bedroom.

Please take note that residents who will be admitted to the hospital or is brought out of the facility for more than 24 hours will be required to take a swab test before they are allowed to come back to the facility. Isolation and quarantine will be observed for 14 days upon re-admitting them to the facility.

If an attending doctor needs to make a home visit to a resident, they will only be allowed to see the patient in the garage. An improvised examining area will be set up. Hand sanitation and disinfection of surfaces will be done accordingly. Both visiting doctor and resident should wear a face mask and face shield.

In case of emergency ---

As is our usual protocol, the facility will contact Lifeline to transport the resident to the hospital. The facility will inform the relative/designated care-provider immediately to meet the patient in the hospital. Please note also that the caregivers will not be able to accompany the resident during transport.

Other reminders/matters

-- Please make sure your contact numbers are updated and assign an alternate family member as care-provider for our resident in case you will not be reached easily.

-- Update your hospital-of-choice and primary attending physician with our facility manager so we know where to direct Lifeline in case of emergency.

-- For bringing of supplies, kindly coordinate with our facility manager for your preferred schedule. All items will be sanitized prior to safekeeping/handing over to our resident.

-- Kindly provide our residents with adequate supplies of alcohol or hand sanitizer and face masks, just in case they are needed.

-- Visits or “kamustahan” via video calls are most encouraged at this point. We will continuously evaluate the situation and prepare accordingly when physical visits by relatives will be allowed to resume.

We hope you understand that these restrictions are in place to help protect primarily our residents, who are at highest risk for the SARS-CoV-2 infection, and our caregivers to ensure that we can continuously provide adequate care and assistance to our residents.

Should you have any clarifications or concerns not addressed by the bulletin, please reach out to our facility manager and we will address them accordingly.

Dr. Josephine Guerrero
Medical Director
Golden Strands Senior Home and Adult Daycare Center

10 June 2020