I’m so pleased to have some good news to share today! We received information about outdoor in-person visits yesterday, which was confirmed on our Long Term Care call yesterday and announced by Lanette Siragusa, Shared Health’s Chief Nursing Officer.
Manitoba has done an incredible job of flattening the curve and following protocols within our Personal Care Homes and Long Term Care facilities to manage risk by implementing visitor restrictions, enhanced environmental cleaning and disinfecting practices, daily staff screening before staff enter the workplace and adherence to provincial personal protective equipment requirements.
As numbers continue to be low, and the province begins phase two of the reopening strategy, we are very pleased that Manitoba Public Health is working with us to support on-site, outdoor visits with the following considerations:
- Essential visitors are those deemed essential to the emotional wellbeing, health, and quality of life of your loved one. In most cases, visitors should be close family and/or friends who have a clearly established pattern of involvement in providing care and support.
- Screening of all visitors, including assessment for symptoms or known exposure to COVID-19 prior to entry. Restrictions will apply to visitors who have travelled outside of Manitoba within the past 14 days. No visitor shall be permitted if they have any cold/flu or other COVID-19 symptoms.
- All visitors must comply with Infection Prevention and Control measures. This includes strict hand hygiene and maintaining physical distancing (6 feet/2 meters apart) at all times, and wearing a non-medical mask (if you don’t have one, we will provide one for you).
Indoor visits remain suspended. Exceptions will continue to be made on a case-by-case basis as per existing guidance, e.g. visits for compassionate and/or end of life reasons.
Although this isn’t a return to normal visitation, we are happy to be able to support in-person connections in a way that keeps the health and safety of your loved ones as our top priority.
We are currently working toward beginning visits on May 29. The management team is assessing possible outdoor spaces and putting policy and practices into place to ensure appropriate infection control between visitors. Once all of the logistics are finalized we will share more information and begin booking visits.
Although in-person, outdoor visits will begin, this won’t reduce our efforts to continue to support you to connect with your family through technology and even potentially continued window visits.
We look forward to seeing you in person soon. Thank you for your ongoing patience and support!
Sarah Mankelow, RN, CNCCP
Director, Health & Transition Services