Community Updates for Week of 8/1/2022

Updates to residents on 8/2/2022

Mild COVID Outbreak at Kendal

As many are aware, we experienced a mild outbreak of COVID on campus in Independent Living over the past two weeks. We are pleased to share that all Independent Living residents that had tested positive during the past two weeks are now beyond their isolation period in their homes.  We commend all residents for the extra precautions they have been taking to remain safe and for being mindful of any symptoms of COVID they may be experiencing. Everyone’s diligence in this has kept our mild outbreak from spreading. Of those that tested positive, a few attended one common event, but most other cases appear to have been individualized cases from exposure off campus.

It is important that we continue to empower ourselves and follow the precautions that we have emphasized throughout the COVID pandemic. Please continue to keep your own supply of home COVID test kits, available through Please notify either the Health and Wellness Clinic at 440-775-9819 or the RN Nurse Manager during evenings or weekends at 440-775-9800 if you test positive or if you develop signs and symptoms of COVID, including sore throat, cough, running nose, headache, fatigue, shortness of breath, fever/chills, muscle aches etc.

We are preparing a reminder sheet for those who travel away from Kendal so that those who travel can make informed decisions of the safeguards to take while away and upon their return to Kendal. It takes all of us, making wise decisions, knowing when it is wise to “lay low” and when to return to routine activities throughout the community, to keep our friends and neighbors safe.

Keep up the good work, Kendal!

Elizabeth Sousa, new Health and Wellness Clinic Administrative Assistant

We are pleased to announce that Elizabeth Sousa has accepted the position of Administrative Assistant of the Health and Wellness Clinic. Elizabeth joined Kendal at Oberlin in 2016 working as waitstaff in the Langston. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of Cincinnati in 2021 and just completed a nine-month Administrator-in-Training internship at Kendal in June. She will sit for her licensure exam as a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator later this year.  Elizabeth brings an understanding of our electronic health record platforms and customer service, has completed her training as a Certified Dementia Practitioner and is a State Tested Nursing Assistant (Kendal trained), all important skills to bring to this position. We are delighted that Elizabeth has decided to continue her professional growth at Kendal with this opportunity.

Podiatrist Update

Some of you may have received a notice from Sheffield Foot and Ankle about the departure of Kimberly Nichelson, DPM, from their staff. We have assurance from Sheffield Foot and Ankle that a podiatrist will be sent to Kendal to keep the same schedule that Kimberly Nichelson had on the Kendal campus. There will be no disruption of service. You may continue to schedule your on-campus podiatry needs through the Health and Wellness Clinic at 440-775-9819. Thank you.

Produce Market Continues this Friday!

The produce stand will be open throughout the season on Fridays from 11:00 am to 1:30 pm. The produce stand will be located outside the main door by the Front Desk. The stand is cash only. The selection will vary as the season progresses. We are working with Grobe’s and other local farms to coordinate what will be available. Our thanks to the Resident Volunteers who make this possible!

International Handbell Symposium

On Saturday, August 6 at 4 pm, the International Handbell Symposium massed ringing concert will be live streamed on YouTube. Twenty-seven handbell choirs, made up of ringers from many countries, will play together. The United States is hosting this event for the first time in twelve years. Our own Betsy Allen will be on the ringing floor – see if you can find her! Plan to watch and listen to this amazing event. Here is the link:

Vitamin D and Bone Fractures

(Shared by Kari Inglis) This is an interesting article and useful to those who take Vitamin D. It appeared in the New York Times. Remember, KORA subscribes to the NYT; the newspapers are in the Library.

Great news: Glass Recycling is back!

(from the Environmental Concerns Committee) Beginning August 1, 2022, we will be able to bring glass bottles (both clear and colored glass) and jars to our trash rooms for recycling. Kendal has contracted with a glass recycling company in Cleveland that actually takes the glass to a center that recycles it into new glass bottles. They will be picking up our glass every other week.

Simply deposit your glass containers in the recycling bin marked with a sign that says, “RECYCLE GLASS HERE – THIS BIN FOR GLASS ONLY.”  Do remove all lids, but there is no need to remove any metal rings from the bottles. Simply rinse and dry the bottles. If you have any questions, please contact Facility Services at (440) 775-9899.

Survey About How Seniors Use Electronic Devices

Our Link-Age membership promotes product development to “harness the consumer power of older adults and help companies better understand and meet the needs of the aging population.”

Link-Age Connect, one of the divisions that engages in research, is currently conducting a survey to gather information on how seniors use electronic devices for entertainment, apps, internet or streaming purposes. The survey will take about 10 minutes to complete and will be open from August 1 through August 31. It can be completed either online or by using pen and paper. There is no obligation to do this survey, but if you are interested, please click on this link: (Otherwise just scroll on by!)

If you have any questions or concerns about a survey or request, please let Michele Tarsitano-Amato or Judy Miller know. Thank you in advance for supporting Link-age Connect, our market research consultancy partner.

For your Calendar ahead: Coffee Hour is on Thursday, August 11

We still plan it to be in person but will also offer KOTV and Zoom: We will plan a Poll for those online to gather opinions on current matters.

Covid News and Statistics

Governor Mike DeWine’s regular COVID Press Conferences:

BA.5 gives COVID a new bite

(The Chronicle-Telegram): “Blooms of infections” are being seen across the nation due to the faster-spreading BA.5 variant according to the county’s Community Protection Team, which meets virtually each month. BA.5 is now the dominant form of the virus in the United States…In the business community, it’s once again become common to hear about people being out of the office due to a COVID diagnosis, said Lorain County Chamber of Commerce President Tony Gallo, who called the trend “a little scary.”

The Lorain Public Library system is seeing more requests for home COVID tests and giving out about 600 per month, according to a report from Director Anastasia Diamond-Ortiz.  Adams said the pandemic is “still a fluctuating situation,” and hopes it would be reclassified as endemic have been pushed off.

Previously, outbreaks rose gradually and then sloped off slowly, he said. But BA.5 doesn’t behave the same way — viral load quickly spikes and wanes…The good news is that hospitalizations and deaths are not following the same pattern. Only 3.1 percent of Lorain County hospital beds are being used by COVID patients right now, according to the CDC. The vast majority of those experiencing major complications, including hospitalization, are unvaccinated, Adams said.

There are also new vaccines on the way, he said — likely to be distributed this fall, they will be delivered nasally. Adams said he believes skeptics who resisted COVID shots will be more likely to use the nasal vaccines. The bad news is that immunity offered by previous COVID infections isn’t as strong when it comes to fending off BA.5, he said. That means people can and in some cases are getting sick from the variant multiple times in relatively quick succession. “The vaccines are still proving to be very safe, much safer than trying to get it naturally and get some immunity,” he told the Community Protection Team.

BA.5 Evades Vaccine and Infection Immune Response – with a caveat

(shared by Don Parker) Contagious Omicron subvariants of the coronavirus — such as BA.1, BA.2, BA.4 and BA.5 — can escape antibodies from previous infections and vaccines, though booster shots appear to provide enough protection to prevent severe disease, according to a new study  published in Science. The finding comes as the Biden administration considers whether to expand access to a second booster shot to all adults due to the spread of BA.4 and BA.5. Ages 50 and older and immunocompromised people over age 12 have been eligible for a second booster since March. BA.5 is “probably the most important one now in the study, as it’s about to become globally dominant,” John Bowen, a co-lead study author and biochemist at the University of Washington School of Medicine.

Bowen and colleagues began researching the Omicron variants months ago, starting with the BA.1, BA.2 and BA.2.12.1 subvariants, which were dominant at the time. Then they added in BA.4 and BA.5, which are now dominant in the U.S. and several other countries. The research team assessed the properties of the subvariants and evaluated how a panel of seven COVID-19 vaccines could protect against the Omicron strains, including shots made by Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Novavax, Sputnik V and Sinopharm.

The researchers found that all of the Omicron subvariants have the ability to escape antibodies to some extent, with increasing levels of immune evasion as the strains mutated and evolved.  In particular, they found that BA.5 can outcompete other subvariants because its spike protein binds to the human receptor cell more than six times better than the original coronavirus strain found in 2019. They concluded that BA.5 is the most immune-evasive COVID-19 variant to date. At the same time, a booster shot increased antibody protection against all Omicron subvariants to decent levels, regardless of which vaccine was used. “We were able to look at essentially every single prominent vaccine platform in the world side by side and see that, despite the scariness of this variant, all of these vaccine platforms are going to elicit solid immune responses,” Bowen said.

At first, the booster shot data for BA.5 took him by surprise. “When I was seeing the data after the third shot, I had to repeat it over and over again because I was just like, ‘Why am I not seeing that this is as immune evasive as other people have said?’” Bowen told Fortune. “We were very excited to see that even though it’s more immune evasive than the other ones we tested, previous methods are still going to protect against it.” The research, which received funding from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Department of Health and Human Services, was conducted by a team of nearly three dozen researchers across the U.S., Argentina, Italy, Pakistan and Switzerland. The FDA has advised vaccine companies to update their booster shots to target the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants for the fall. In the meantime, Bowen said, the research indicates that current vaccines and boosters still work against severe disease. “We totally agree it’s very important to continue trying to find better ways to make protective vaccines. It’s going to take some time to get those,” he said. “If people need vaccines, we know that current boosting methods are going to be protective.”

COVID STATISTICS as of 8/2/2022  
VACCINATIONS# VaccinatedPopulation% of Pop
Kendal at Oberlin vaccinations 
Residents Vaccinated337337100.0%
Staff Vaccinated (some have Medical or Religious Exemption)22022299.1%
Total Residents + Staff vaccinated55755999.6%
Lorain County (Vaccinations Started)208,95167.4%
Ohio (Vaccinations Started)7,410,96863.4%
KENDAL AT OBERLIN – COVID CASES (Cumulative)8/2/2022Increase 
Independent Living Resident Cases305 
Stephens Care Center – Residential Care90 
Stephens Care Center – Skilled Nursing20 
   Residents Subtotal41 
SCC Staff and Volunteer Cases801 
Other Staff Cases572 
   Staff Subtotal137 
Total Residents + Staff178 
** Current Isolation, COVID Positive2 
** Total COVID Beyond Isolation172 
LORAIN COUNTY – COVID CASES (Cumulative)7/28/2022Increase 
Total in Zip Code 440742,32833 
Total Lorain County – Probable and Confirmed Cases75,161882 
Current CDC Lorain County Positivity Rate (measures entire population with results to ODH)18.5%HIGH
Total Lorain County929 
Total Deaths in Long Term Care Settings3050 
Age Range Breakdown:  20-29: 5.  30-39: 7.  40-49: 23.  50-59: 73.  60-69: 189.  70-79: 257.  80+: 375
CUYAHOGA COUNTY – COVID CASES (Cumulative)7/29/2022  
Cuyahoga County (excluding Cleveland)213,203 
Cleveland Cases88,686 
Total Cleveland + Cuyahoga County301,889 
New Cases for Cleveland + Cuyahoga County3,478 
Cuyahoga County (excluding Cleveland)3,056 
Total Cleveland + Cuyahoga County4,058 
Total Deaths in Long Term Care Settings983 
OHIO 7/28/2022% 
21-Day Average of New Cases26,984 
Total Cases2,948,242 
Age Range of all Cases 
Median Age of all Cases38 
Total Hospitalizations (cumulative)121,595 
Median Age of all Hospitalized65 
21-Day Average of Hospitalizations648 
Total ICU Admissions (cumulative)13,901 
21-Day Average of ICU Admissions39 
Total Health Care Workers Diagnosed111,6304% 
Total Tested in Ohio22,272,602 
Total Ohio Resident Deaths39,035 
Median Age of Deaths76 
21-Day Average of Deaths38 
Total Deaths in Ohio Long Term Care Settings9,153  

Contact Information

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