March 23, 2022
Updates to Residents 3/22/2022
COVID Reminds Us It is Still Around — Seven Test Positive This Week
We are learning on our campus that COVID is still around. Although 100% of our residents are fully vaccinated and boostered and over 99% of our staff are as well, we are experiencing a small COVID outbreak on campus. Last week, through our on-going COVID testing of staff, one staff member tested positive for COVID. On Sunday and Monday of this week, we had 6 Independent Living residents test positive and now one SCC resident. Fortunately, everyone that has tested positive has had only mild symptoms, but it is a serious reminder to us that COVID is still around.
This variant is more than likely Omicron. To our knowledge, the newer BA.2 variant that is spreading across Europe has not reached this area.
As a reminder, it is important that all of us continually monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID. We must pay attention to these symptoms no matter how minor they may seem, nor can we simply discard them as what we may always experience this time of year. COVID symptoms include, from the CDC:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Fatigue muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
If you experience any of these symptoms, please avoid contact with others and notify the Kendal at Oberlin Health and Wellness Clinic, 440-775-9819 during regular business hours or the RN Nurse Manager on evenings at weekends at 440-775-9800. Some residents have used their government supplied COVID home test kits. After they tested positive with that test, they informed staff at Kendal at Oberlin who provided a second test to verify the results.
As a precaution, we are also implementing the following on campus until we are confident there is no additional spread of the COVID virus:
- Remember the basics: Mask over mouth and nose, practice frequent hand hygiene and maintain social distancing.
- Masks are required temporarily in all public areas, including the Heiser Community Center and Heiser Auditorium. In the SCC, KN95 masks must be worn.
- The option for Independent resident to pass through the Stephens Care Center (SCC) is temporarily paused. Visits to specific residents in the SCC are still permitted. SCC guests must remain masked during all SCC visits (with a KN95 mask) including while in residents rooms.
- SCC residents dining in the Fox and Fell and Langston is temporarily paused.
- All residents are encouraged to consider risks when gathered with small or large groups. Please keep masks on.
- Guest dining in the Fox and Fell and Langston is on Hold (it was to resume yesterday.)
- The PS Salon will be closed for this week, appointments will be rescheduled.
- We are pausing communal dinning and communal activities in the Stephens Care Center until we are confident that there is no additional spread of the COVID virus in the SCC.
Other steps will be taken including reconsideration of group activities if the week unfolds with more cases and obvious spread in independent living or the SCC.
Health Services Forum
We will be meeting every other month for the remainder of 2022. Upcoming dates are Wednesdays at 4 PM on May 4, July 13, September 14, and November 9. Please submit topics of interest to Stacy Terrell to be including on one of the upcoming forums.
Highlights from last week’s forum (March 16)
- Improvements in Accessing Health Records at Cleveland Clinic and Mercy
- We heard the Kendal’s electronic medical record, eClinical Works, can now connect with the Cleveland Clinic and Mercy Health systems. Residents under care of those health systems do not need to provide the Health and Wellness Clinic with an after-visit summary — but please do alert the Health and Wellness Clinic if you have been seen so that we can download the summary of that visit in order to provide continuity of care at Kendal.
- Note that University Hospitals does not sync with our electronic health record at this time. Patients seen at UH still need to provide the Kendal Health and Wellness Clinic with a copy of the after-visit summary.
- The Importance of the Kendal Annual Exam for All Residents
- For continuity of care at Kendal, it is vital that all residents have a regular annual exam with Kendal at Oberlin’s Nurse Practitioner, Chrystn Petsas. This is important for all residents, even if under the primary care of a physician outside of Kendal at Oberlin. This ensures that we have updated your record, including current diagnoses and medications, for access in the event of an emergency.
- Chrystn can see ALL residents for medical consultation and treat and prescribe for acute care conditions, such as cold and flu symptoms, minor infections (upper respiratory, urinary, sinus, eyes, ears, skin, fever, sore throat, shingles), new aches and pains, minor cuts and burns and more.
- Chrystn can treat and prescribe chronic conditions of patients of Georgia Newman, MD and Kashif Khan, MD.
- Stay Connected to Your Social Services Team When Having Surgery
- If you have upcoming outpatient or inpatient surgery, please remember to contact Social Services at 440-776-5016 or 440-775-9813. This will allow us to have the proper supports in place. This is important even if the procedure is minor just in case some follow-up is necessary.
- Stephens Care Center Update
- Beth Stewart, Director of Nursing, announced that five of our nurses have been recently certified in Wound Care Prevention and Management and several staff members are now Certified Dementia Practitioners.
The Fitness Center is a common area, so please wear your masks when in class or while working out in the equipment room as well as in the adjoining hallway. Swimming is still permitted, but please distance yourselves while in the pool.
As the search continues for two full-time Fitness staff, we have some great news to share: Please welcome Donna Boucher from Epic Revolution! Donna will be teaching 2 classes in the Fitness/Relaxation Room starting Monday, April 4th. The classes offered will be “Group Fitness” and “Total Body Toning.” Descriptions and registration for those classes will be coming soon. Donna has her own Fitness and Personal Training business and has contracts locally at Splash Zone and Oberlin College. She teaches a diverse repertoire of water and fitness classes, and she is ready to keep you moving! Stay tuned for more details.
From Greg Zehe, Director of Hospitality Services & Assoc. Administrator
Guest Dining Paused
I have detailed in earlier bulletins our plan to serve resident guests at Breakfast and Dinner. We are currently paused for a brief period. We appreciate the patience and good humor all have shown through this transition period.
Lunch in Fox & Fell to be served on China plates
Please bear with us this week as we continue our transition to serving the lunch meal on China. Meals ordered for carryout will still be packed in the green to-go boxes.
You can help us by bussing your table using the blue bus pans in the same rack we used for dinner service. Thank you!
Kendal Dining Participates in Local Job Fairs
As the Lorain County infection rates have declined, the work we have invested in creating relationships with local schools and organizations is paying dividends. We have a full schedule of upcoming recruiting events. At several of these schools, we conduct mock interviews and work with the school counselors as part of the job fair. We have events planned out until the end of the school year. Last week we did an event at Oberlin Community Services. We had a reasonable turnout and met several good candidates. Here is what we have planned in the next few weeks:
- March 22nd we are at Firelands High School.
- March 24th we are at Elyria Catholic High School.
- April 5th we are at Lorain County Joint Vocational School.
Latest Meal Plan Selections:
We often are asked for the meal tier selection by curious residents. Here are the latest results:
HOUSEKEEPING & LAUNDRY UPDATES
- Did you Opt-Out of Housekeeping Services? A number of residents chose to opt-out of housekeeping services during the pandemic. Please know that you are welcome to resume your cleaning service whenever you are ready. In most cases, we kept your scheduled time reserved and there are still a few openings available if you would like to resume on a different schedule.
- If, due to a quarantine period, you have a short-term need to have your trash collected by Housekeeping, please leave your trash outside your door no later than 12:30pm, Monday through Friday.
- Please contact Crystal Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 775-9199.
United Way’s Annual Spelling Bee Starts This Week
Kendal’s extraordinary “Wordly Wise” Team is once again going up again the best spellers in Lorain County. Kari Inglis, Nancy MacRae, and team captain Robin Lauren could use our support. You can help our team earn advantages in the game with bonus points, extra time, do-overs, and more by making any size donation to United Way. Here is a link to our crowdfunding site. Your support will go a long way towards helping local agencies, schools, and other organizations collaborate with each other to help get kids ready for kindergarten and middle schoolers ready for life. Preliminaries will be filmed this Wednesday, Mar. 30. Good luck, Wordly Wise!
Is your Voter Registration Current?
Even though we are not sure of when there will be an Ohio primary, do remember to check your voter registration status. If there is a May 4 primary, everyone who wants to vote must be registered by April 4 (30 days before the election). New residents must live in Ohio for at least 30 days to be able to register. Check your registration status by going to VoteOhio.gov. Registration can be done online or by downloading a form.
Forms can be picked up in our library soon. Forms should be mailed by the end of this week to be sure they are received at the Board of Elections before April 4. For more information see the Lorain County Board of Elections: Lorain County Board of Elections https://www.voteloraincountyohio.gov Questions? See Mary Van Nortwick or Ann Francis.
You can (and should) now recycle plastic bags on your own, by dropping them off at (1) the Oberlin Walmart (look for the green bins inside the grocery entrance); (2) Giant Eagle grocery store in Amherst; or (3) Target in Amherst. Note that IGA has no plans at present to resume what used to be the most convenient place to recycle bags. The plastic bag recycling program at Kendal was undertaken during Covid — but it is being discontinued as of April 2.
Governor Mike DeWine’s regular COVID Press Conferences: https://ohiochannel.org
Covid-19 roundup: Omicron is at least 40% deadlier than the flu
The spread of the omicron subvariant BA.2 in the United States may be slowing down; a study finds older Covid-19 survivors experience cognitive impairment even a year later; and more in this week’s roundup of Covid-19 news. Read the story.
Europe’s BA.2 Variant
Medscape’s editor-in-chief, director of the Scripps Research Institute, is one of several infectious disease experts concerned with the current surge of the BA.2 variant of COVID in Europe. (BA.2 is 3 times more contagious than the BA.1 variant known as Omicron.) What happens with COVID in Europe typically shows up in the US several weeks later. So far, BA.2 seems to be less likely to put infected people in the hospital as compared to earlier COVID surges. Vaccination with a booster gives protection, but there is evidence that the protection is waning as time goes on. The still being debated question is, when should the 4th shot (2nd booster) be recommended for the older population? Currently it is recommended only for people with significant immune compromised conditions. Read the full article here.
A new Covid wave may be coming. Most Americans shouldn’t worry
(Washington Post, article is free to all) In the coming weeks, the United States could see another wave of covid-19 infections driven by a subvariant of the omicron strain, known as BA.2. While the federal government needs to do much more to prepare for this potential surge, most Americans should not be worried.
There are three factors that determine the level of concern about new variants. First, is it more contagious? Here, BA.2 raises red flags. Analyses from Britain suggest its growth rate is 80 percent faster than the original omicron variant, meaning it will likely displace existing strains and become dominant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that in the United States, BA.2 already comprises 23% of new infections, up from just 4% a month ago.
The rise of the highly contagious BA.2 is a major reason Britain and at least half of European Union countries are seeing an escalation in covid-19 cases. During previous waves, the United States has generally lagged Europe by about three weeks, so it is likely we will see an uptick in cases soon. The dramatic decline following the original omicron wave is leveling off, and data from wastewater early-detection systems suggest that an increase may already be underway.
Two other factors provide reassurance despite BA.2’s transmissibility. One is that it does not cause more severe disease as compared to the original omicron strain, known as BA.1, which is a milder variant than some previous strains such as delta. The other is that BA.2 is not so substantially different from BA.1 that it escapes immunity from vaccines or prior infection. A New England Journal of Medicine paper reported that people with booster doses produced equally effective antibodies against BA.1 as BA.2.
And researchers from Britain and Qatar have found that vaccines provide excellent protection against severe illness due to both omicron subvariants… Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2022/03/21/ba2-covid-wave-concerns-restrictions
|COVID STATISTICS as of||3/22/2022|
|VACCINATIONS||# Vaccinated||Population||% of Pop|
|Kendal at Oberlin vaccinations|
|Staff Vaccinated (some have Medical or Religious Exemption)||216||218||99.1%|
|Total Residents + Staff vaccinated||549||551||99.6%|
|Lorain County (Vaccinations Started)||204,541||65.9%|
|Ohio (Vaccinations Started)||7,266,570||62.1%|
|KENDAL AT OBERLIN – COVID CASES (Cumulative)||3/22/2022||Increase|
|Independent Living Resident Cases||12||6|
|Stephens Care Center – Residential Care||9||1|
|Stephens Care Center – Skilled Nursing||2||0|
|SCC Staff and Volunteer Cases||65||1|
|Other Staff Cases||45||0|
|Total Residents + Staff||133|
|** Current Isolation, COVID Positive||8|
|** Total COVID Beyond Isolation||123|
|LORAIN COUNTY – COVID CASES (Cumulative)||3/21/2022||Increase|
|New Cases Since Last Week (Monday)||20|
|Average Per Day for Last Week||n/a|
|Total in Zip Code 44074||1,823||1|
|Total Lorain County – Probable and Confirmed Cases||66,311|
|Positivity Rate for Healthcare Workers (Current CMS Lorain County)||2.2%|
|Current CDC Lorain County Positivity Rate (measures entire population with results to ODH)||1.8%||Moderate|
|Total Lorain County||897|
|Total Deaths in Long Term Care Settings||295||0|
|Age Range Breakdown: 20-29: 4. 30-39: 7. 40-49: 22. 50-59: 70. 60-69: 184. 70-79: 253. 80+: 357.|
|CUYAHOGA COUNTY – COVID CASES (Cumulative)||3/20/2022|
|Cuyahoga County (excluding Cleveland)||186,794|
|Total Cleveland + Cuyahoga County||267,089|
|New Cases for Cleveland + Cuyahoga County||374|
|Cuyahoga County (excluding Cleveland)||2,929|
|Total Cleveland + Cuyahoga County||3,869|
|Total Deaths in Long Term Care Settings||938|
|New Cases in the Last 24-Hours||n/a|
|21-Day Average of New Cases||5,446|
|Age Range of all Cases||<1-111|
|Median Age of all Cases||38|
|Total Hospitalizations (cumulative)||113,379||4%|
|Total Hospitalizations Last 24 hours||n/a|
|Median Age of all Hospitalized||65|
|21-Day Average of Hospitalizations||441|
|Total ICU Admissions (cumulative)||13,347||<1%|
|Total ICU Admissions last 24 hours||n/a|
|21-Day Average of ICU Admissions||53|
|Total Health Care Workers Diagnosed||101,546||4%|
|Total Tested in Ohio||21,920,157|
|Total Ohio Resident Deaths||37,608|
|Median Age of Deaths||76|
|21-Day Average of Deaths||447|
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Stacy Terrell, Chief Health Services Officer, at 440-775-9811