COVID-19 UPDATES

Covid Testing Updates

Last updated January 30, 2023.

Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines Including Boosters

You can find the link to the CDC website here.

There Are New Updates to the CDC’s Guidelines Regarding Interim Infection Prevention and Control for Healthcare Personnel

You can find the link to the CDC website here.

In partnership with PharMerica – Long Term Care Pharmacy, Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. hosted a Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic on Thursday, April 21, 2022. Over 125 vaccine doses were administered to residents and employees, many which included a second booster dose for those eligible over the age of 50.

Why-the-Urgency-Around-Boosters_-_-WECANDOTHIS.HHS_.GOV_

Booster-Eligibility-for-Everyone-50-and-Older-_-WECANDOTHIS.HHS_.GOV_

Order Your Free COVID-19 Home Testing Kit

All Americans can order Testing Kits today.  Testing kits are limited to four per household, no matter the size of the household. 

It’s super easy and the test kits should be mailed out within seven to twelve days of ordering. 

The rapid at-home tests can be ordered on the website: https://www.covidtests.gov/

Watch on CBS News

Delta Variant – What the CDC Wants You to Know

CDC-Delta

Pfizer Vaccine Gets FDA Approval!

The FDA has given full approval to the Pfizer Covid vaccine. Read more here.

National Nursing Home Vaccination Statistics

COVID-19-Vaccine-Info

Get Vaccinated!

Get-a-COVID-19-Vaccine

CDC Shares Vaccination Progress

CDC Recommends That Adults 65 and Older Get Covid-19 Vaccine

COVID-19-Vaccines-for-Older-Adults

As More Pennsylvanians Become Vaccinated, Restrictions Start to Ease

Governor Tom Wolf announced plans to lift mitigation orders on Memorial Day and masking orders once 70% of adults in Pennsylvania are vaccinated. Read more here.

And to register for a clinic, go to www.mckeancountypa.org

Ensuring Vaccine Effectiveness

The CDC offers guidance on the effectiveness of vaccines. Read more here

Eligibility Expands in all 50 States

Read more here from CNN.

Why Get Vaccinated?

CDC Gives a Warning

COVID cases have been decreasing, but the CDC has a warning.

Read more here

Keep up to Date on PA’s COVID Response

COVID is tough, but together Pennsylvanians are tougher. United, we can defeat the virus. Here are resources to help individuals, families, and businesses do their part. Keep checking back. This guide will be kept up to date as resources and information change. You can find up-to-date information about cases in Pennsylvania at on.pa.gov/coronavirus

Five Facts About Visitor Restrictions in Nursing Homes

Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc.

  1. The federal government issues nursing home visitation restrictions. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) restricted visitation in March 2020. Restrictions were revised in September 2020 to allow some flexibility within strict parameters.
  2. Visitor restrictions apply to everyone. Those who are vaccinated, those who are considered “essential caregivers”, and those who have recovered from COVID-19 all must follow the same visitor restrictions.
  3. Outdoor visitation is the CMS-preferred method of visitation. CMS prefers that permitted visitation occur outdoors if possible. The nursing home may be able to access Civil Monetary Penalty (CMP) funds from the state to purchase items to facilitate outdoor visitation in winter weather.
  4. Outdoor visitation can take place under most circumstances. Unless a nursing home is experiencing a significant outbreak affecting large numbers of residents and/or staff, outdoor visitation is permitted.
  5. Indoor visitation is 100% impacted by how well the surrounding community manages COVID-19. If the surrounding community shows a county positivity rate of 10% or greater, indoor visitation is restricted. Indoor visitation is also restricted if the nursing home is experiencing an outbreak, and outbreaks in the nursing home are tied to high rates of COVID-19 in the community.

Five Things You Can Do to Help Nursing Home Visitation Resume

  1. Wear a mask. Wear a mask any time you leave your house, even if you’re social distancing from others. Masks should cover the mouth and nose.
  2. Social distance and avoid crowds. Stay at least 2 arms’-length (6 feet) away from anyone who does not live in your household. Avoid gatherings of people who don’t live in your household, especially indoor gatherings. Stay connected by phone or online platforms.
  3. Stay home if you’re sick. Even if you think it’s just a cold or just the flu, stay home. Don’t go to work, don’t go to your place of worship, don’t even go to the grocery store. Don’t accept visitors either. Call your doctor and get a COVID-19 test if the doctor recommends it.
  4. Get vaccinated when it’s your turn. As more people get vaccinated, fewer people get sick. That leads to fewer cases, fewer deaths, and less opportunity for the virus to mutate into other variants.
  5. Spread the word, not the virus. Educate others on the steps above and why it is important for us all to do our part. This virus is everyone’s problem and we all have a responsibility in the solution.

For more information on COVID-19 and how to protect yourself and others, go to : https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

Vaccine: Distribution Plans/Resources

White House Announcement – Three Week Vaccine Allotment Forecasts – 16% Supply Increase to States

US to boost COVID-19 vaccine shipments to states (beckershospitalreview.com)

Who’s Eligible for the COVID-19 Vaccine?

Are you eligible to get the COVID-19 Vaccine? Go here to find out: https://www.pa.gov/guides/get-vaccinated/#Step1ChecktoSeeifYoureEligible

If you are eligible, find your closest provider here: https://padoh.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=0ea7864ea98d423daa3f17
11e3cba09e

What to Expect After Your COVID-19 Vaccine

Many people have no side effects from receiving the COVID-19 vaccine; however, if you do have side effects, they are normal and proof that your body is building protection against the disease. Some people experience mild flu-like symptoms that go away in a few days. Learn more about what to expect here.

The CDC lists Things to Know about the COVID-19 Pandemic

Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines

Your best protection from COVID19 will be a combination of getting a COVID-19 vaccine, wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds, and washing your hands often. No one tool alone is going to stop the pandemic. Learn about the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination and learn the Facts about COVID-19 vaccines.

Walgreen’s COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ’s here

Why Get Vaccinated?

In preparation for our COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics at Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc., we would like to share Pfizer-BioTech’s Vaccine Emergency Authorization Use Fact Sheet.

Pfizer-BioNTECH-COVID-19-Vaccine-EUA-Fact-sheet-for-Recipients-revised-12-23-20

Vaccination Information From Walgreens

Vaccine Update for Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc.

December 15, 2020

Dear Residents and Resident Representatives,

By now you have probably learned that COVID-19 vaccines will soon be approved and ready for distribution to the healthcare workers and residents in long term care. We have long awaited this exciting news!

We understand that some of you may be concerned about the safety of these new vaccines, as they have been developed and tested far more quickly than those in the past. We want to assure you that the speed with which these vaccines were developed is not due to skipping important safety steps, but rather the result of focused, collaborative work performed by experts across the globe. Vaccines approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have undergone the same level of rigorous testing for safety and efficacy as other vaccines, and have been tested in tens of thousands of people, including older adults. Two independent advisory committees of experts from academic institutions also monitor vaccines to ensure their safety.

Most of the COVID-19 vaccines require two separate doses given about three or four weeks apart, depending on the vaccine. Participants of clinical trials have reported experiencing short-term side effects after being vaccinated, with more pronounced discomfort after the second dose. These possible side effects include headache, muscle pains, fatigue, chills, fever and pain at the injection site. Sometimes there is misunderstanding about the cause of these reactions, as you may have heard someone say a vaccine has “made them sick” or given them the disease that the vaccine was intended to prevent. We want to be clear that this is not the case. The COVID-19 vaccine cannot give you a COVID-19 infection. The vaccine works by helping the body create antibodies to fight off the virus. Feeling discomfort after getting the vaccine means that the vaccine is doing its job and your body is making antibodies.

We, along with thousands of other long term care facilities, are participating in a program with the Centers for Disease Control to help us most efficiently distribute these vaccines to our residents free of charge once they are available. We will keep you informed of this process as we move forward. Our staff will also have the opportunity to get vaccinated through this program, if they have not been vaccinated previously.

As we have been saying over the course of this difficult year, we are all in this together. Please know that the safety and well-being of our staff and residents have been, and remain, our top priority. We are confident that the worldwide, unprecedented scientific achievement of these COVID-19 vaccines will eventually enable us to enjoy life with our loved ones again. We look forward to doing our part in this effort by getting the COVID-19 vaccine, and hope you will join us. Please review, sign and return the enclosed Vaccination Administration Record Informed Consent Form to our Business Office as soon as possible. It is only necessary to complete the highlighted sections. We want to be ready to vaccinate as soon as the vaccine arrives. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Lisa Johnson                                                                                                     

Lisa A. Johnson, NHA

Chief Executive Officer

Note:  This publication has been reproduced to provide key data. Please refer to cdc.gov for most up-to-date information.  CDC will continue to update their website as vaccine recommendations and supply change.

8 Things to Know about the U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Program

Updated Dec. 13, 2020

Now that there is an authorized and recommended vaccine to prevent COVID-19 in the United States, here are 8 things you need to know about the new COVID-19 Vaccination Program and COVID-19 vaccines.

  1. The safety of COVID-19 vaccines is a top priority.

The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Learn how federal partners are working together to ensure the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.

CDC has developed a new tool, v-safe, as an additional layer of safety monitoring to increase our ability to rapidly detect any safety issues with COVID-19 vaccines. V-safe is a new smartphone-based, after-vaccination health checker for people who receive COVID-19 vaccines.

  • COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you from getting COVID-19. Two doses are needed.

You need 2 doses of the currently available COVID-19 vaccine. A second shot 3 weeks after your first shot is needed to get the most protection the vaccine has to offer against this serious disease.

  • Right now, CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccine be offered to healthcare personnel and residents of long-term care facilities.

Because the current supply of COVID-19 vaccine in the United States is limited, CDC recommends that initial supplies of COVID-19 vaccine be offered to healthcare personnel and long-term care facility residents.

  • There is currently a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccine in the United States, but supply will increase in the weeks and months to come.

The goal is for everyone to be able to easily get vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as large enough quantities are available. Once vaccine is widely available, the plan is to have several thousand vaccination providers offering COVID-19 vaccines in doctors’ offices, retail pharmacies, hospitals, and federally qualified health centers.

  • After COVID-19 vaccination, you may have some side effects. This is a normal sign that your body is building protection.

The side effects from COVID-19 vaccination may feel like flu and might even affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. Learn more about what side effects to expect and get helpful tips on how to reduce pain and discomfort after your vaccination.

Making COVID-19 Vaccination Recommendations

CDC makes vaccination recommendations, including those for COVID-19 vaccines, based on input from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. 

  • Cost is not an obstacle to getting vaccinated against COVID-19.

Vaccine doses purchased with U.S. taxpayer dollars will be given to the American people at no cost. However, vaccination providers may be able to charge administration fees for giving the shot. Vaccination providers can get this fee reimbursed by the patient’s public or private insurance company or, for uninsured patients, by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider Relief Fund.

  • The first COVID-19 vaccine is being used under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Many other vaccines are still being developed and tested.

If more COVID-19 vaccines are authorized or approved by FDA, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will quickly hold public meetings to review all available data about each vaccine and make recommendations for their use in the United States. 

All ACIP-recommended vaccines will be included in the U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Program. CDC continues to work at all levels with partners, including healthcare associations, on a flexible COVID-19 vaccination program that can accommodate different vaccines and adapt to different scenarios. State, tribal, local, and territorial health departments have developed distribution plans to make sure all recommended vaccines are available to their communities.

  • COVID-19 vaccines are one of many important tools to help us stop this pandemic.

It’s important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to help stop this pandemic as we learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work in real-world conditions. Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others, stay at least 6 feet away from others, avoid crowds, and wash your hands often.

Department of Health: Pennsylvania to Receive 97,500 Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine Going to 87 Hospitals; Philadelphia County to Receive 13,650 Doses

Vaccine Coming Soon!!

The COVID-19 Vaccine is on the horizon!  We expect the vaccine to be available to our industry, including older adults and healthcare workers, as the first to receive the two-dose vaccine.  We anticipate having the vaccine available before the end of 2020.

Visit CDC link to learn  more about the facts!

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/index.html

https://www.cnn.com/world/live-news/coronavirus-pandemic-12-10-20-intl/h_4e54be4adce1922379b0d330a062361d

A Community Update From Upper Allegheny Health System

stop-the-spread-of-germs

Letter from Lisa Johnson, CEO

December 1, 2020

Dear Resident & Resident Representatives,

As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise across the country, as of November 30, 2020, Pennsylvania is reporting 361,464 confirmed cases; McKean County is reporting 477 cases and 418 confirmed cases. Bradford Regional Medical Center, our local hospital, currently has four patients hospitalized with confirmed COVID-19 and five persons under investigation. A majority of individuals continue to recover at home; however, we recognize the additional precautions that need to be taken relative to seniors and our most vulnerable population.

As a result of in-house resident testing conducted at Bradford Ecumenical Home on November 27th, we received notice that eight residents tested positive for COVID-19. All residents are asymptomatic. Residents have been moved to quarantine for isolation precautions. Resident Representatives and physicians have been notified. All residents continue to be screened and closely monitored.

Residents and employees that tested negative will be retested every 3 to 7 days until testing identifies no new cases of COVID-19 for a period of at least 14 days since the most recent positive result. We will continue to share updates and appreciate your continued support as we follow our testing guidelines.

As a reminder, all outdoor visits have been suspended in an effort to mitigate the potential spread of the virus.  However, we are encouraging ALL friends and families to partake in our ‘Holiday Wonderland’. Since we won’t be able to take residents out to see the Christmas lights, we’re bringing the lights to them! Please see our attached flyer for more information. We welcome you to decorate outside your loved one’s window and help bring the Christmas Spirit to Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. We appreciate your help and support!

Please make sure you are receiving messages from VoiceFriend. This service allows us to send messages and notifications with important and timely information directly to your phone (land line and/or cell), email, and/or text. The messages are sent the way YOU want to receive them.  This is how we will continue to update you regarding activities, emergency preparedness alerts, health and safety updates and much more.  If you are not signed up, please contact Maryrose Carpenter, Admissions Coordinator, at 814-368-5648 or maryrosecarpenter@behcr.com. You may also stay connected via our website at www.behcr.com and follow our Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. Facebook Page.

From our Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. Family to Yours, thank you for your continued love, care and support.

Sincerely,                                                                         

Lisa A. Johnson, NHA

Chief Executive Officer

Letter from CEO, Lisa Johnson

Dear Resident & Resident Representatives,

Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. has been working hard over the past several months to prevent the spread of COVID-19. As of November 25, 2020, Pennsylvania is reporting 312,399 confirmed cases; McKean County is reporting 363 confirmed cases. With the recent uptick in cases in McKean County, we recognize it was simply a matter of time before unfortunately the virus made its way to our community.

This letter is to alert you that on November 26, 2020 we learned that two Bradford Ecumenical Home employees tested positive for COVID-19.  The employees with the confirmed cases will not return to work until the required quarantine period has been met. All of our staff members continue to follow public health recommendations to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. These include strict handwashing procedures, and in many circumstances, wearing facemasks, gowns, and gloves when interacting with residents who are sick.

As a result of our first confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, and the increase in McKean County Community Positivity Rates, all Bradford Ecumenical Home residents and employees will be tested every 3 days to 7 days over the next 14 days to ensure there are no additional positive cases. Chapel Ridge will begin testing employees as well. We continue to actively monitor our residents and employees for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and are working with our local and state health departments.

To help ensure the health and safety of our residents, employees, friends and family, and to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19, Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. is suspending all outdoor visits at this time.  Please continue to take advantage of window visits, telephone calls, skype visits, etc. When it’s safe to coordinate visits again, we are eager to schedule our outdoor visits in our new ‘Cozy Cottages’ that arrived this week. Information on scheduling appointments and House Rules will be forthcoming.

These protocols and decisions are being made in accordance with recommendations from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and our Pennsylvania Department of Health.  We appreciate your ongoing support and understanding

For the most up-to-date information on this topic, please visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/covid19.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Sincerely,

Lisa A. Johnson, NHA

Chief Executive Officer

Thanksgiving Guidelines From the CDC

Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc., Issues Statement on First Confirmed Coronavirus Case

Bradford Ecumenical Home, Inc. today issued the following statement on the first confirmed COVID-19 case in their community.

On Sunday, October 25, 2020, we have been notified that one of our employees at Chapel Ridge Personal Care Home tested positive for COVID-19.  The employee is asymptomatic and did not have direct contact with residents. The employee with the confirmed case, and anyone who had close contact, will not return to work until the required quarantine period has been met. We continue to actively monitor our employees and residents for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and are working with our local and state health departments.

“Our thoughts are with the employee and their family at this time,” said Lisa Johnson, Nursing Home Administrator and CEO. “Fortunately, we have been prepared for this eventuality because we focus intensely all year on creating a healthy, controlled environment. We will continue to work closely with our facilities, the state and local Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to maximize containment.

Thus far, as of October 24, 2020, according to Pennsylvania Department of Health and Human Services, McKean County has 88 confirmed cases, encompassing 3 nursing facilities or personal care homes. The number of resident cases is 6 and the number of employee cases is 9. There have been zero deaths reported associated with nursing facilities or personal care homes. Pennsylvania has a total of 185,866 confirmed cases.

Johnson stated, “We want to thank the public for being supportive and understanding at this time, we continue to ask people to avoid visiting senior care facilities and allow our trained medical professionals and healthcare team to focus on their jobs. This is all being done to help keep people safe and healthy.”

Practice social distancing by putting space between yourself and others. Continue to practice healthy habits to help slow the spread of COVID-19.


Stop the Spread

  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds
  • Clean and then disinfect frequently used surfaces
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Avoid touching your face

The CDC has some helpful tips for your travel plans.

Deciding to go out during COVID-19

Wondering how you can do your daily activities safely while protecting yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19?

The more closely you interact with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread.

So, think about

  • How many people will be there?
  • Will the space be indoors or outdoors?
  • Will you spend a lot of time with others?

(“PST” here’s a hint – think People, Space, and Time.)

Learn more about assessing the risk when you‘re deciding to go out: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/deciding-to-go-out.html

2020-5-20_McKean-County-COVID19-Resource-Directory-_-Paper

DOH-COVID-FAQ