HIPAA and Facial Coverings (Edgewood)
Since our last communication with you, there have been several confirmed cases of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Chautauqua County as well as several individuals who have recovered from the virus locally, but we have NOT had a positive case on our campus thus far. New information was recently released to the community regarding this public health crisis so we thought it best to communicate what some of that means for us and for those we serve.
First, while we understand your desire to know, we are prohibited from sharing specific names, medical history, or contact information of those tested for COVID-19 on our campus regardless of the results. Sharing this information would be a violation of every residents’ rights. We kindly ask you to refrain from requesting this information from our direct care staff as they cannot and will not share it.
Second, you have undoubtedly read about the shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in our nation-wide healthcare system. At this time, our supply of medical-grade PPE is in OK shape for our staffing needs. However, the recent directive given from NYS Governor Andrew Cuomo states that all New Yorkers are now required to wear a face covering in crowded public spaces at all times when a 6’ distance cannot be avoided. Based on this new information, we highly encourage you to self-isolate and avoid going out into the community when possible. If you must go out, you are required to wear something over your face in high traffic areas like grocery stores, hardware stores, etc. If you do not have anything to wear over your face, please contact Diana so we can do what we can to connect you with the resources you need.
Lastly, the #THANKSHEALTHHEROES movement online is very strong, but often times the nursing staff and ancillary services in long term care settings are forgotten about in the media. Please consider visiting our Facebook page, sending a letter of thanks, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with your own personal messages of encouragement and wisdom we may share with our dedicated staff. Your kind words and support help keep them going strong in these uncertain times.
We will continue to update you as new information is received and especially if any individuals test positive for COVID-19 in our facility. As a reminder, we should all continue to wash our hands regularly and practice social distancing as much as possible. We’ve included a small flyer from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to hang in your homes to help remind you of this.
We thank you in advance for your cooperation during this challenging situation.
President and CEO