COVID-19 Updates

The Hearth is proud to announce that all of our campuses are now sanitized by Viking Pure cleaning and disinfecting solution on a daily basis. We are one of the first organizations in the nation to raise the bar to daily hospital grade disinfection across all our 15 campuses.

The Hearth is stronger than ever, and we have met this challenge with new tools, resources, practices, and advancements that are helping us to lead the way forward for our residents.

In these challenging times we want to reassure you that we continue to work tirelessly to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those we serve. We have and will continue to exhaust every resource and best practice available to ensure that our premier campuses provide optimal care.

Our dedication to you is unwavering.

Visitor & Access Policy

  • Please contact your Hearth campus to learn more about our evolving visitation procedure and phased reopening timelines.
  • We are in the process of providing safe and measured access to each campus. We thank you for your understanding of these enhanced measures.
  • Anyone entering the community will be screened upon arrival. We ask that you work with your local community to review the specific precautions that are in place so you can be fully prepared to help us all uphold the highest safety and security standards.
  • Health care providers, vendors and urgent visits, including hospice staff, will be granted access to the community once they have completed our entry screening procedures.
  • Clinical Service teams are conducting wellness checks on residents each day including screening questions and temperature checks.
  • Should you identify any change in your condition we ask that you immediately notify our clinical team for further evaluation.
  • Your safety and wellbeing is our top priority. We have provided masks to help us all maintain an ongoing level of protection throughout your campus. We ask that you maintain social distancing of six feet or greater and that you wear your mask as appropriate. (Our teams are standing by to assist you with this process, and to answer and questions that you may have.)
  • We’ve increased our housekeeping services per CDC guidelines, and we have implemented enhanced cleaning and disinfection measurescleaning and disinfection measures.
  • In an effort to increase social distancing, group outing, events, dining, and programs will all be modified to provide distancing, sanitation, and to optimize safe engagement practices.
  • Our vehicle fleet is being cleaned and disinfected before and after each use.
  • Community dining rooms are currently open, with multiple seatings per mealtime. Dining rooms have increased staffing and distanced seating to provide a safe and enjoyable setting.
  • Hairdressing services will begin with scheduled appointments and new cleaning, sanitation, and droplet precaution measures are in place. (Concierge services will assist with appointments.)
  • Independent and Assisted Living dining rooms are in the process of a phased reopening and will open with new distancing measures, cleaning supplies, and sanitation stations (Hospitality services team members can assist with further information specific to the new procedures, timing, and schedules).
  • Keepsake Village dining rooms are currently open. This area has increased staffing and distanced seating to provide a safe and enjoyable setting.
  • We continue to require a six foot minimum of social distancing in all community areas.
  • We understand that keeping in touch with your family and friends is important. See your community Activity Director if you’d like help setting up FaceTime or Skype video chat. Please also contact your community team to schedule visits, learn more about our phased reopening, and to learn about the various efforts that continue to be implemented daily.

For information on location-specific COVID-19 resident communication, select a community name below.

Hearth family,

I understand that the past several months have been emotionally taxing on you and your loved ones. As the COVID-19 pandemic rocked the nation, we at The Hearth acted quickly to follow all local, state, and federal recommendations to safeguard our residents. From restricting visitation, to increasing cleaning schedules, conducting frequent wellness checks, and practicing strict personal protective equipment and social distancing guidelines, we have dedicated ourselves to slowing the spread of this dangerous virus.

Now, as positive cases throughout the country slow, and the curve begins to flatten, we are met with the opportunity to gradually reopen our communities slowly and safely.

My team and I have been working diligently to put together a phased plan for reopening our communities to visitation, serving meals in our community dining rooms, and reinstating activities and scheduled transportation. Please know that, although we are all eager to see these changes, any alterations to our current procedures will be made strategically and gradually out of an abundance of caution.

You have placed your faith in us, and our dedication to you and your loved one remains unshaken as we slowly return to our day-to-day operations. As you know, your loved ones are some of the most vulnerable to this virus, and we must act with their safety in mind throughout every step of this COVID-19 journey.

I look forward to sharing the final details of our phased reopening plan with all of you once it’s cemented. You have all been incredibly supportive throughout this pandemic, and the kindness that you’ve shown to our community teams speaks volumes.

Thank you for your continued patience, understanding, and dedication to The Hearth.

Sincerely,

Kevin Hunter, COO

For information on location-specific COVID-19 communication, select a community name below.

Coronavirus Family Update

Viking Pure for Families

  • Staff members who experience any sign of illness are encouraged to notify their Executive Director immediately, and not report to work until they are symptom-free.
  • Staff members who have traveled outside of the country, and/or within any hot zone areas, must confer with their department head before returning to work.
  • All staff will have their temperature taken when they report for their shift. Team members with elevated temperatures will not be allowed to complete their shift and will be asked to leave the community until they experience a normal body temperature, without the assistance of fever inhibitors, for 24 hours.
  • Team members are required to wear masks in the community at all times.
  • PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) continues to be replenished and distributed for your safety and for the safety of those whom we serve. We ask that you monitor the status of these products at all times and notify your department manager if any items become damaged. Damaged items are not to be used and will need to be replaced immediately before you continue to conduct any resident services.
  • We ask that you maintain a safe social distance, of six feet or more to all team members and residents whenever possible.
  • Frequent handwashing (in accordance with posted CDC guidelines) and the correct use of PPE is essential to the safety of all. Please continue to refer to the supplied training materials each day upon shift arrival for any updates to these procedures.
  • Staff experiencing any symptoms are highly encouraged to take advantage of our telemedicine partnership through Excellus, our health insurance provider. Due to an overwhelming demand placed on healthcare professionals, telemedicine appointments can save time and expedite appointments. Register for Excellus’ telemedicine program by visiting www.ExcellusBCBS.com/Member, or calling 1-866-692-5045.
  • If you could benefit from counseling during this stressful time, please consider using the WorkLifeMatters employee assistance website. On it, you can chat with a counselor via email, text, or phone. The service is free and completely confidential.
  • If you have experience in food service, housekeeping, or hospitality, and recently lost your job or experienced a layoff due to COVID-19 we could use your help. Visit our Indeed page to learn more about employment opportunities in our communities.
  • We are grateful for your unwavering commitment to our mission to serve. We continue to supply PPE, sanitizer, and Viking Pure solutions for your protection. Please take advantage of the various protective measures and supplies that we have in place for your safety at work as well as at home.
  • Please know how appreciative we are of your ongoing strength and heroic actions throughout this pandemic. You are #HearthStrong, together we are #HearthStrong.

For information on location-specific COVID-19 staff communication, select a community name below.

Coronavirus Staff Update

Viking Pure for Teams

  • Vendors are subject to health screenings upon arrival.
  • Please contact the community prior to drop offs, or for any other questions or needs should circumstances warrant.
  • All deliveries should be left outside the front door. Delivery drivers who require a signature should call the main line, posted on the front doors, and alert the community receptionist, who will come outside and accept the package.
  • As we navigate the challenges brought on by COVID-19, the health and well-being of our residents has been, and continues to be, our number one priority. We continue to follow guidelines as laid forth by state and federal health agencies, including the CDC.
  • We’ve increased cleaning and disinfecting procedures throughout all of our communities, and proudly offer Viking Pure Solutions to all of our campuses. Viking Pure Solutions uses electrolyzed water to kill bacteria, fungus, and viruses. It also prevents micro-organisms from creating a resistance to any of its disinfectants. Unlike many popular cleaning products, Viking Pure’s system is completely non-toxic, is registered by the EPA as a hospital-grade disinfectant and has demonstrated effectiveness on viruses similar to COVID – 19. For more information, read our press announcement, or visit www.vikingpure.com.
  • Another priority of our COVID-19 plan focuses on recognizing our team members, who continue to be #HearthStrong, through initiatives like our Hearth Hug campaign. Our community team members are the backbone of The Hearth, and we could not provide exceptional care and service for our residents without them.
  • As COVID-19 precautions continue, we understand that frequent, clear communication is crucial. Please, continue to check back for updates, and direct all media inquiries to Kevin Hunter, C.O.O., at khunter@thehearthllc.net.

Hearth Family & Friends – Yes! You Can Help

Many of you have reached out to our home office or individual communities asking “how can we help?” We are so grateful of the outpouring of support and your willingness to help and share. Due to the increasing interest in supporting our communities, teams, and seniors we wanted to provide a simple resource to help identify areas that could benefit those we serve most. Please find the items and ways you may help below. Please know that all of your efforts and well wishes are extremely appreciated by all. Thank you from our Hearth Family to yours.

Please, consider*:

  • N95 respirator face masks
  • Surgical masks
  • Sanitizer
  • Disposable gowns
  • Goggles

Please, consider sharing*:

  • Letters, Pictures, & Works of encouragement
  • Hearth Hugs (see form on www.thehearthllc.net)
  • Love More Initiative (intergenerational project of sharing)

To help, please ensure all items are in their original, unopened packaging, and contact your local Hearth community to schedule a drop-off date and time.

*note that all items will be sprayed and sanitized before entering the community

Love More Letter & Artwork Program

In a time when so many of us are practicing social distancing, or are under quarantine, it’s important that we find ways to stay positive and stay connected. That’s why we’re rolling out some options for family members, friends of the community, or local families with children at home due to school closings, to submit letters or artwork to our residents to help lift their spirits. Here’s are some options on how to send letters, drawings, or paintings to our residents:

  1. Scan your submission and send it to lovemore@thehearthllc.net.
  2. Mail your submission to our one of our community addresses.
  3. Drop off your submission, in the labeled box, in front of any of our communities.

Thank you in advance for spreading cheer! It means the world to our residents!


Hearth Hug

Do you know a team member who is going above and beyond? Please, consider making their day and showing them how appreciative you are of their dedication during COVID-19 with a Hearth Hug. To send a Hearth Hug, simply print out this card, fill it out, and mail it to the community address.

Thank you for all of our team members for their dedication to our residents and their families. Its through their courage that we stand united, #HearthStrong.

#HearthStrong

What does it mean to be #HearthStrong? It means delivering hundreds of meals to residents daily. It means taking the time to call residents on their apartment phone to check in on them and make sure they’re not lonely. It means teaching residents how to use video chat technology, and watching their faces light up as they look into the eyes of a long-time friend, see their children’s smiles, or hear their grandchildren’s’ laughter.

We stand united, and, although these unprecedented times are trying, we’re confident that we will see the other side of COVID-19 if we stay positive, stay dedicated, and stay #HearthStrong.

To see more examples of how our teams are staying #HearthStrong, follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

Visitation

Why are you restricting visitors?

The COVID-19 virus is most dangerous for seniors, we feel that restricting visitors is a necessary step toward keeping our residents safe. Currently, we allow scheduled, socially distanced, outdoor visitation at every Hearth community. We look forward to welcoming impromptu and indoor visits as soon as it is safe to do so. Contact your local Hearth community to schedule an outdoor visit.

How long will the restriction last?

As state and local governments revise their COVID-19 restrictions, our communities will begin to reopen in gradual, strategic phases. Lifting of restrictions will be a slow process, out of an abundance of caution.

What are the exceptions to this policy?

The community Executive Director will make limited exceptions in extreme or emergency cases, including end of life care. Anyone entering the community under these circumstances will be screened upon arrival.

What if there is an emergency?

Emergency service personnel, including EMTs and fire fighters, may enter the community if needed. We will make limited exceptions in extreme or emergency cases for family members. These cases must be expressly approved by the community’s Executive Director. Anyone entering the community under these circumstances will be screened upon arrival.

May I visit with my loved ones outdoors, but on the community grounds?

Yes! Pre-scheduled, socially-distanced outdoor visits are welcome, weather permitting. Contact your local Hearth community to schedule an outdoor visit.

Are there other ways that I can get to see my loved ones?

Yes. While we are opening visitation the importance of virtual connections has grown. We have deployed our IT and community teams to assist you and your loved one with this process. Community teams are equipped to conduct video calls via FaceTime or Skype. This service will remain in place throughout our phased reopening. Contact your community’s Executive Director to schedule a video call date and time with your loved one.


Resident Exit & Reentry

Are residents allowed to leave?

Residents are allowed to leave for essential medical appointments. Residents who leave the community for any other reason, including shopping, dinner, or socialization, need to schedule their outing with the community’s Executive Director.

Why are residents not allowed to leave?

Residents will be allowed more movement as it is deemed safe to do so. We ask that you consider the severity of this virus as you make plans for travel or events. We are providing masks and sanitizer to all residents and families to help prepare for this situation. While this reopens in a staged manner, we ask that you work with your community on the specific timing and details as safety and security remain our top priority. COVID-19 is most dangerous for seniors, and every societal interaction increases the risk of exposure. We continue to follow the most stringent guidance available to safeguard our staff and residents during this pandemic.

What if I accept the liability of leaving the community?

We understand that you may be willing to put yourself at risk of exposure to the virus. However, this also puts others in our community at risk, and therefore this will be subject to ongoing restrictions.

Am I allowed to temporarily move out of the community?

Yes. If you desire, you can temporarily move out of the community to stay with family members. You cannot return until we are able to lift these restrictions. Rent for your apartment will still be due. If you pay for a supplementary level of care, that fee will be waived after 14 days, per the community’s residency agreement.

What happens if someone goes to the hospital and is ready to return to the community?

Residents who are returning from the hospital will be screened. We trust that hospitals have enhanced infection control procedures and will not release anyone who poses a threat to others. We will continue to communicate with hospitals and services as residents receive services to monitor status and coordinate readmission and transport.


Deliveries

How do deliveries work?

All deliveries must be made outside the building. A staff member will accept them outside of the front doors, sign if necessary, clean, and deliver them accordingly.

Can I bring something, like a care package, to my loved one?

Yes. Know that all packages should be labeled with the resident’s name and apartment number and must be dropped outside the building. Likewise, all drop-offs should be scheduled in advance.


Personal Needs

How do residents get groceries or other supplies?

Family members are encouraged to bring groceries, toiletries, or anything else that they usually share with their loved one during regular visits to the front of the community. Bring your items to the front of the community, where a staff member will accept them. Be sure to call the main community number and speak with the receptionist to schedule a date and time for your package drop-off in advance. We will only accept grocery deliveries or packages that have been pre-scheduled.

Are salons open?

Yes! Our salons are open and operating with increased social distancing and sanitation procedures. Contact your local Hearth community to learn hours of operation, procedural changes, and how to make an appointment.

What if I use a dog walker?

Residents may continue to use a dog walker. Residents should coordinate their dog walker’s visits with their community’s Executive Director. The Executive Director will ensure that a team member meets the dog walker, at the designated dates and times, at the community’s main entrance. Dog walkers are not allowed in the community.


Medical Needs

How will I get to my doctors’ appointments?

We are happy to help transport residents to and from local medical appointments. For peace of mind, know that our fleet of vehicles is disinfected before and after each use. Your community’s Clinical Services team will work directly with your health care provider to schedule transportation.

Can a family member pick me up for my doctors’ appointments?

Please consult with the campus Executive Director. In an effort to limit all possible exposure points we have enhanced our medical driver schedule to accommodate these needs. For any extenuating circumstances we ask that you coordinate efforts closely with the community team. Upon return, all residents and members assisting with transport will be required to wash hands and rescreen.

What if a resident need hospice care?

Health care providers, including home health, private duty, nursing services, physicians, and hospice staff will be granted access to the community once they have completed our entry screening procedures.

Will the in-community therapy provider still see residents?

Yes. We have also asked each provider to prioritize our campus to ensure that any professional who sees residents in our campuses follow all screening, sanitation, and required procedures. We have also asked that these dedicated staff members close any communal training or treatment areas, and limit room to room visits. If such visits are medically necessary, they will be allowed, however the strictest PPE and sanitation practices will be used.


Staff

How are staff screened?

We take staff members’ temperatures daily. We also have a detailed questionnaire that is completed upon each shift. Staff members who have fevers or cold-like symptoms are not allowed to work until they’re symptom-free and advised by their doctor to be safe to return to work.

Do staff get paid when they miss work?

Full time and part time staff have a paid time off (PTO) bank that allows them to be paid when missing work due to illness.

What are you doing to help staff?

We understand that staff must balance their own family’s needs with those of our residents. With staff’s safety in mind, we’ve diligently procured personal protective equipment, including masks, gloves, and gowns. We’ve also implemented Viking Pure Solutions, a completely non-toxic disinfectant that is safe for all surfaces, including people and pets. Team members are encouraged to spray themselves with Viking Pure prior to leaving the community, and to take some of the solution home, in clearly labeled spray bottles, to use at home with their families.


Resident Illness

How are you checking residents?

We are proactively conducting wellness checks and monitoring the temperatures and symptoms of all residents daily. We will continue to adjust these efforts under the guidance of state and local health officials. We are also working closely with each resident’s doctor.

What COVID-19 practices apply to Memory Care residents in Keepsake Village?

We continue to engage residents through our activity department but have increased our practices of social distancing where possible, including greater separation in our dining room during meal times. We have also increased sanitation practices surrounding activities. We’re utilizing paper and plastic for dining in order to reduce the risk of cross contamination, and table clothes have been removed from tables as well. Please contact your local community for new enhancements to activities, meal times, and other events as we continue to prioritize safety and cleanliness.

We are taking resident temperatures regularly. In the event of illness on Keepsake Village, we would continue to work with each resident’s physician on communication and guidance.
We continue hourly checks as normal, and are taking resident temperatures regularly. In the event of illness on Keepsake Village, we would continue to work with each resident’s physician on communication and guidance.

What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in our community?

If there is a suspected or confirmed case, we immediately reach out to the local and state Health Department and continue to follow all recommendations from the CDC. We continue to monitor all residents and staff members for illness and symptoms. This includes but is not limited to daily screenings, temperature checks, questions, and assessments to review all relevant factors in assessing any potential for risk.  If there are concerning conditions or symptoms to share about your loved one, please know that a member of our team will contact you directly.

Will you tell me if there is a case of COVID-19 in our community?

Yes. If we are aware of a positive case of COVID-19 case by someone in your community, we will notify residents and their families.  We will also increase communication to keep you posted on progress, actions, and measures to help protect your loved one.

Are you testing residents and staff for COVID-19?

Yes. We provided COVID-19 test kits, from Aria Diagnostics, to all of our communities. Having kits on-site helps ensure that residents exhibiting symptoms can be tested quickly. Likewise, several county and state health departments have made testing readily available. We have tested every resident and team member in counties where community-wide testing is provided.


Communication

How are residents, staff, and families being made aware of operational changes brought on by COVID-19?

Residents are informed of operational changes through face-to-face conversations with staff members, postings throughout the community, and letters delivered to their apartment door.

Staff members are briefed on any operational changes daily, through in-person meetings, posted messaging, and our employee text messaging service.

Family members are informed through personal phone calls as situations warrant, and frequent email updates. If you’d like your email address added to our family distribution list, call your loved one’s Hearth community and speak with the Receptionist.


Comments & Concerns

Who do I call if I have a comment, concern, or complaint?

First, call your community’s Executive Director. If your community’s Executive Director cannot address your concern, call The Hearth Home Office at (877) 419-0704. Please allow us 24 hours to respond to any non-urgent requests. During this timeframe we have a team standing by to review further questions, comments, concerns, or other matters and we will be triaging them as appropriate to focus our resources on urgent and critical concerns. All questions and inquiries will be answered. We appreciate your understanding and support.