Community Update for week of 12/19/2022

Update to Residents on 12/20/2022

Warmest Wishes for the Holidays!

Whether you are leaving Kendal for the holidays or staying on campus we wish everyone to have a joyous holiday.   Christmas – Dec. 25 Hanukkah – Dec. 18 – Dec. 26 Kwanza –    Dec. 26 – Jan. 1

The Staff Twelve Days of Christmas “Performance”

Thanks to the staff and family who brought beautiful voices, festive holiday gear, and silliness to the recorded 2022 holiday video edited by Creative Arts Therapy Music Therapist Jara Dell. We hope you enjoy it! You’ll also see some of the previous year’s Holiday Songs saved in this YouTube location.

Afternoon Exchange

Next week on Thursday 12/29 at 4 PM. We’ll recognize and celebrate another “Pandemic Hero.” For December, we have invited Mary and Malcolm Fowler who stepped forward to replace countless watch batteries for Kendal residents unable to leave campus. Please plan to join us in person or on KOTV.

Weather Advisory for Later this Week

Please make sure you and your loved ones – especially if travelling later this week — are reviewing the weather and travel advisories. Friday is predicted to be treacherous for travel with icy and then snowy conditions. The National Weather Service is warning of predicted wind gusts of 45 mph + beginning Thursday evening and single digit temperatures Friday through Sunday with wind chills that may go as low as -20 F.  Accumulating snow is expected Friday morning through Saturday morning. For travelers, be prepared, check your vehicle before you leave and make sure to have a fully supplied emergency kit, including mobile phone, blankets, water, and imperishable food with you. Stay informed of this changing weather event.  

Being Prepared for Bad Weather (reminders from the Resident Handbook)

Other Announcements

Important Notice about Policy about Holiday Gifts and Staff:

This is a reminder that all staff (contract staff included) are not permitted to receive individual gifts from residents. Kendal has a Holiday (and Vacation) Staff Appreciation Fund that assures our staff is provided with a very generous cash gift twice a year (excluding Department Heads). Please know that to accept a gift otherwise puts a staff member at risk in their job, which we would hope no resident would intentionally do. When asked about other ways of showing appreciation, we have always allowed dropping off a food treat to share with all as an acceptable practice, as it does not single out a staff member. Following such adopted policies is part of the resident contract. We’re not scrooges — we have high professional standards and ethics.

High Volume of Packages continues. Your cooperation is needed!

We had over 175 packages delivered to the Mail Room yesterday – and expect as many again each day this week. They all must be sorted, stamped, notices put into mailboxes, etc. Please be patient and give us time to process them accurately. Everyone is eager to receive their mail and packages, of course – but there is literally a mountain of mail to handle at this time of year!    

Housekeeping/Laundry Update

Greg Zehe and staff say, “Thank you for the flexibility you have shown as we maneuver through all the challenges of the holiday season!”

You may not be aware of how challenging the holidays are for the Housekeeping team. The scheduling crunch is especially difficult at this time of year as we have to “make up” all of the cottage cleanings that are missed because our staff have two holidays off. The result is struggling to fit 5 days of work into a 4-day schedule. This year, the problem is further exacerbated by short staffing. So, we are requesting resident assistance:

If you are planning to be away from Kendal during this period, or willing to have your cleaning scheduled further out, please contact Crystal Hall at 775-9199, to discuss alternative arrangements to help us all out. Thank you!  

Winter Solstice had a large KOTV audience

In addition to the full-capacity in-person audience, at least 87 residents watched the Winter Solstice program on KOTV!  75 slips were put into the “I Watched It” tub by the Heiser mailboxes, and at least 14 more residents watched from the SCC. Thank you to all who let us know you joined this community celebration via KOTV. And thank you to everyone involved in the fabulous show! Anne Palmer, KORA secretary.

Wildflower Hill Expansion meadow seeding

Davey Resource Group is planning to seed the meadow expansion at the base of Wildflower Hill on Monday, 12/19. We expect the seed to begin sprouting in the Spring. Davey has also been contracted to maintain the area as the seeds grow in and mature over the next two years. For more information you may contact Rachel Duncan, or Dan Baker,

Do you want to learn American Sign Language?

An 8-week class will be offered by the Oberlin High School American Sign Language group under teacher Jaison Anderson.

Class is open to Residents, Staff, Family, and Volunteers. It starts January 27. To register, please contact Michele Tarsitano:

My Email Was Hacked! 

A risk management advisory from Toni Merleno, Risk Manager:

What to do!  My phone’s voicemail is blowing up with friends calling to ask why I would ask them for “a favor;” or suggesting a phishing email is swimming around in cyberspace using my email address book to find generous souls to purchase gift cards for my “niece” or other family members that I don’t have.  The first thing you must do is contact your email provider to notify them you were hacked. They will advise you to change your email password right away. Then you should create a voicemail message on your phone stating that your email was hacked and the message asking for a favor is not from you — it is a scam and to report it as phishing to their email provider or simply delete it without responding to it. Be careful opening email you don’t recognize. Look at the email tag on the sender’s name to see if it looks strange or unfamiliar. Just delete those messages without opening them if you can; and report it as phishing if you can, too. There is more we can do to protect ourselves from hackers/scammers using our email accounts.  Become knowledgeable and check out:

Reminder: Don’t Walk in the Roads!

A concerned resident at last week’s Coffee Hour reminds us all: “don’t walk in the roads during the winter” especially after dark. It is very difficult for drivers to see walkers at night if they are walking on the road. We don’t want any tragic accidents. Be sure to walk on the designated (and cleared-of-snow) walkways around Kendal.

COVID News/ Statistics

Governor Mike DeWine’s regular COVID Press Conferences:

Why can Stephens Care Center Residents dine in Fox & Fell and Langston, but IL Residents can’t dine in Friends Corner?

This remains a federal restriction. When SCC residents dine in Fox and Fell, they are “signing out” of the SCC and taking on the risks associated with COVID such as being in Langston, Fox and Fell, and even off campus.  The rationale from our Health authorities is having someone from outside the Care Center come and dine in the dining room of the care center puts other SCC residents at risk, a risk that to which they did not agree.  SCC Residents may exit the care center with risks associated with dining outside the SCC, but we are not permitted to allow non-SCC residents to dine in in SCC, exposing others.  –Stacy Scott Terrell, Chief Health Services Officer

Does the mask mandate include the exercise rooms in the Fitness Center? 

Masks are optional in the Exercise Room.

Are home test kits still available?

(Shared by Deborah Gray) YES. This article announces the resumption of free rapid-response COVID tests: I easily and successfully placed an order using the link at the end of the article – this link: 

Booster Shots Work:

 (Washington Post 12/19/2022. Shared by Mary Behm.) Coronavirus booster shots reduced by at least 50 percent the likelihood of ending up in an emergency room or being hospitalized, according to data released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Despite these promising numbers, vaccine uptake has been slim. Only 14 percent of eligible Americans ages 5 and older have received the omicron-specific booster, according to Washington Post reporter Lena H. Sun.

Omicron is the dominant coronavirus variant, and public health officials worry the low vaccination numbers will contribute to a covid-19 surge during the holidays.

“Covid-19 cases are averaging above 66,000 per day for the first time since mid-September, and deaths are averaging about 400 per day for the past seven days, according to the CDC,” Sun writes. “More than 40,000 patients are hospitalized with covid, with more than 9,000 patients admitted with covid each day, according to federal health data.” 

COVID STATISTICS as of 12/20/2022  
VACCINATIONS# VaccinatedPopulation% of Pop
Kendal at Oberlin vaccinations 
Residents Vaccinated341341100.0%
Staff Vaccinated (some have Medical or Religious Exemption)22122498.7%
Total Residents + Staff vaccinated56256599.5%
Lorain County (Vaccinations Started)212,91768.6%
Ohio (Vaccinations Started)7,543,42164.5%
KENDAL AT OBERLIN – COVID CASES (Cumulative)12/20/2022Increase 
Independent Living Resident Cases570 
Stephens Care Center – Residential Care270 
Stephens Care Center – Skilled Nursing40 
   Residents Subtotal88 
SCC Staff and Volunteer Cases1042 
Other Staff Cases770 
   Staff Subtotal181 
Total Residents + Staff2692 
Current # in Isolation, COVID Positive1 
Total # of COVID, Beyond Isolation278 
LORAIN COUNTY – COVID CASES (Cumulative)12/16/2022Increase 
Total in Zip Code 440742,68917 
Total Lorain County85,676560 
Current CDC Lorain County Positivity Rate10.6%HIGH
Total Lorain County9736 
Age Range Breakdown:  20-29: 5.  30-39: 7.  40-49: 23.  50-59: 74.  60-69: 190.  70-79: 274.  80+: 400
Note: Cumulative = since start of pandemic. Increase = since last week.

Contact Information

If you have any questions or concerns,  please contact Stacy Terrell, Chief Health Services Officer, at 440-775-9811