Message from CEO: DeAnn Eaton – April 7, 2020

Well, it’s certainly been a tough couple of weeks.

THANK YOU to those valued employees who are coming to work and dedicated to serving our Residents. I realize many of you are working extra shifts and doing work not normally within your regular job duties. It is valued! You have my most heartfelt thanks and appreciation.

THANK YOU to our Residents who are doing their part to stay healthy and safe. I realize every day you get information about what is changing. That’s not easy for you, it’s difficult to know what to plan and what to expect. THANK YOU for being patient and understanding as we work through how to maintain service to  you and how that’s being accomplished. We know it’s hard and not easy. I know your families are also concerned because they are concerned about your wellbeing and they can’t visit you. This won’t last forever, and together let’s try and be kind and patient with each other.

You are all in my thoughts and prayers. DeAnn

April 7, 2020 – An update from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director, regarding COVID-19 restriction:

Currently, there are no known COVID-19 cases or exposures among residents and staff of Sommerset Neighborhood. Staff members have been amazing during this time. They are all working hard to keep residents and each other safe from COVID-19. Management continues to monitor our processes, discuss resident status five days per week, and screen staff members at least one time per day. Our housekeeping and Focus on Function Therapy team continue to clean handrails, and door handles regularly, while the wonderful housekeeping department continues to enhance their usual cleaning responsibilities.  All staff members, and any essential providers who enter the building, are screened upon entrance and are required to wear a mask.

The Governor has signed an emergency training waiver that will allow Sommerset to hire and train people who want to be Certified Nursing Assistants (C.N.A.s). C.N.A.s are required to have formal training, State testing, and certification. Since all schools and State testing sites are closed, it is even more difficult to find certified staff at this time. We are currently reviewing the curriculum and associated requirements and plan to hire our first two trainees in the next week or two.

So many family members and others in the community have been dropping off masks, hand sanitizers, and other supplies. These items and kind gestures are greatly appreciated. We know that families and residents miss each other tremendously. Residents are trying their best to comply with our room restrictions. They are allowed breaks from their rooms and are monitored for social distancing. Sommerset residents have been amazing and are the best among us. Thank you, residents, family, and staff, for being so patient and supportive. We will continue to work hard every day to care for your loved ones.

3/27/2020 – An update from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director, regarding Covid-19 restrictions:

Dear Sommerset residents,

As you have noticed, we have implemented protocols, some more obvious than others, to protect each of you and those who provide care to you. I meet with our department directors at least daily to discuss our strategies in this effort.

Our protocols change daily, sometimes more often, based on information we review from the CDC, industry associations, the health department, and our own assessment of our risks. Our goal has been, since the beginning, to implement the steps necessary to protect you, yet restrict your daily life as little as possible.

Sadly, today we have been instructed that we must require more extreme restrictions.

Effective today, I’m asking all residents to stay in their rooms, except mealtimes, until further notice. Starting Monday, all meals will be delivered to your rooms. Please do not come to the dining room for meals. You may come out for short exercise breaks, sitting in the courtyards, or just to get away for short moments. We will monitor your outings to ensure that you are staying at least 6 feet from other residents and you do not have symptoms of exposure. For those who may be distressed by dining in your rooms, we will try to rotate people sitting one person at a table in limited numbers.

Group activities are suspended until further notice. The activity team will be visiting rooms on an individual basis. Group therapy will now be individual visits. Salon services will be limited to one person at a time and no residents waiting outside of the salon.

I ask for your complete cooperation so we can all get through this without exposure to the Covid-19 virus. Oklahoma and Cleveland counties have the highest exposure and death rates from Covid-19 in Oklahoma. Several persons in nursing homes and assisted living communities have been exposed. We have no known exposures or symptoms at Sommerset, and our extreme restrictions are necessary to mitigate the risk. Despite all our efforts, people could become ill.

The best way to keep safe is to isolate, stay 6 feet away from others, wash your hands frequently, keeping hands away from eyes, nose, and mouth. Drinking plenty of fluids is always a great plan.

If you feel ill, feel like you have a fever, sore throat, new or changed cough, please notify staff to have a nurse visit you. We will continue to stay informed and modify our plan as needed. We all look forward to getting through this together.

COVID-19 Visitation Message from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director

Sommerset Neighborhood understands the need to combat social isolation and loneliness during the COVID-19 crisis. We would like to extend an invitation to resident families to visit their loved ones while practicing social distancing.

Please call Yvonne Gutierrez, Activity Director, at (405)691-9221 and she will schedule a time for your visit. An employee will escort the resident to our glass doors where you may contact them via a cell phone provided by Sommerset.

This arrangement will allow face to face visitation while keeping residents, family, and employees safe. Most importantly, residents and family will be able to stay connected.

3/24/2020 – An update from E. DeAnn Eaton, CEO, regarding COVID-19

Haverland Carter LifeStyle Group (HCLG) and our affiliates are committed to providing the highest quality senior housing and care. We respect the needs of our older adults who are at greatest risk.

Our company, indeed our country, has never faced a situation such as this. Each of our communities have been adhering to the daily updates and requirements issued by their local government, Center for Disease Control, World Health Organization, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, LeadingAge, and the health care associations of their state. To see the latest updates at any of our communities please go to their website or Facebook page.  A link to each of our communities can be found at the “AFFILIATIONS” tab on HCLG website: www.haverlandcarter.com.

We are aware of the stress this has put on our employees who are superheroes. They are struggling to balance work, family and other stressful issues, yet are still there to provide care and services to our residents. HCLG has an experienced HR department that is keeping up with what we need to know and do to be a support to our employees.

All of our communities, as directed by the local, state and federal guidelines, have severely restricted visitors. We recognize how difficult this will be for residents and their loved ones. However, limiting residents to potential exposure is an essential element of containment. This is a dramatic change in the operation of our communities but we are dedicated to making the adjustments needed to prioritize and protect the needs of our residents and the staff who care for them.

Stay calm and WASH YOUR HANDS!

3/19/2020 – An update from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director, regarding Covid-19 restrictions:

We are making our best effort to contact all resident responsible parties by telephone to communicate this information. Please share with all friends and family of our residents. This will help us focus on keeping our residents safe and cared for during this difficult time.

I absolutely recognize how impactful it is to be restricted from visiting with your loved ones, and I am so sorry that all of us are experiencing these restrictions, but my priority is to mitigate the risk of Covid-19 infecting residents and those taking care of them: our staff.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC), LeadingAge OK, Oklahoma Assisted Living Association, our Governor, and our health department all agree that visitors be restricted. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has MANDATED that visitors be barred from Nursing Homes. I have a report today that a resident in an Oklahoma assisted living facility has died from Covid-19. Most, if not all assisted living facilities have banned all but essential visitors.

Today, after much discussion and strategy with my team, we have decided to ban visitation of residents at Sommerset. We will be changing (temporarily) the entrance code to restrict visitors. Any visitors who have demonstrated to me that a resident will suffer emotional or mental distress from lack of visitors, or those visiting for end of life/compassionate visitation will be required to ring our door bell for entrance and screening. If we are not available to answer the door immediately, please call the cell phone listed at the door and wait for staff to assist you with screening.  For the protection of residents and our staff, we will escort any visitor to the resident’s room, request that you stay there for the duration of your visit, and please pull the resident’s call light for escort out of the building. We want to be sure that any visitor does not interact with any other resident and keeps appropriate distance from staff. Any guest requesting end of life or emotional distress visits be cleared by the Executive Director in advance to discuss Covid-19, how to prevent transmission, and our protocols for visits.

Please remember that our motivation is only to protect our residents (your loved ones), and the staff providing their care.

3/19/2020 – A Message from Oklahoma State Department of Health

But I’m Not Even Sick!

If you’re experiencing mild symptoms that feel like a typical common cold, or you don’t even have symptoms at all, it’s probably hard to understand the importance of staying home. We understand and want to stress that this is not about YOU.

It is about your grandparents.

It is about your aunt with high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes.

It is about the volunteers in the nursery at your place of worship.

It is about the hourly workers still making your coffee.

It is about the healthcare workers who continue to put themselves in harm’s way.

We are asking all of our Oklahomans to be good neighbors.

  • Limit your time out and about in the community to just the essentials.
  • Observe social distancing guidelines. If you are waiting in line to pick up necessities at the grocery store, or need to pay for gas at the gas station, keep your distance from the next person in line, or ask the person behind you to take a few steps back if you need to.
  • Practice good personal hygiene. Any time you interact with members outside of your own household, remember to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer when you return home.
  • Pay attention to your surroundings. Are you in a crowded room with elderly? Is it hard to walk in between people to get to the counter? If you or someone you love is at higher risk, remove yourself from that situation.

While data continues to become available to help medical experts understand how COVID-19 is being spread, we know our best weapon is personal responsibility. Let’s make future generations proud of how we worked together to mitigate a public health crisis. Let’s serve as leaders in responding with empathy, compassion and respect for our neighbors.

3/16/2020 – An update from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director

Our strategy for protecting our residents and staff from Covid-19 exposure:

Dear Sommerset Neighborhood residents, families, and friends,

As you likely aware, information concerning, and cases of Covid-19 is being constantly updated. There is now at least one positive case in Oklahoma County, and one positive case in Cleveland County. With these cases being close to our community, we will now enhance our visitation restrictions. I am very aware of the inconvenience and distress that this may cause, but my higher priority now is to make every effort to keep our residents (your loved ones), and those who care for them from exposure to Covid-19.

Effective March 16th, visitation to Sommerset is restricted to necessary medical providers , compassionate/end of life visitation, and for those who would suffer mental/emotional harm from the separation of family.  We ask that any visits that meet these criteria occur Monday through Friday between 8 am and 6pm. This will ease the screening burden on staff so that we can care for residents and absorb the additional duties outlined in our strategy.  We strongly request that there are no visitors outside of the criteria listed above. If you MUST visit outside of the visitation hours, PLEASE do not pass the entrance desk without screening. If a staff member is not at the desk, call the number posted in the lobby and wait for assistance. If you need to bring supplies for your loved one, please consider leaving them at the entrance desk for us to deliver.

Any resident who leaves the community will be placed on room quarantine and monitored for symptoms for 14 days upon return.  If any visitor is known to have been outside of Oklahoma within the last 30 days the visitor will not be allowed to enter for 14 days.

Any new residents will be quarantined in their apartments and monitored for symptoms for 14 days from admission.

Please refer to our face book page or website for updates. This will be faster than mail and our telephone updates.

3/13/2020 – A letter to residents and families from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director, regarding COVID-19

A message from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director, regarding Covid-19:

Dear Sommerset Neighborhood residents, families, and friends,

Upon receipt of this message, each resident’s responsible person has likely received a telephone communication from our receptionist on my behalf. I want to follow-up that initial contact with more detail about the steps we are taking to mitigate the risk for Covid-19. We take the wellness of our residents and staff very seriously and will keep informed of the latest information from the CDC, LeadingAge, Oklahoma Assisted Living Association, and other relevant resources. With new information constantly coming in, our plans will be fluid, so please be patient with changes in the plan. At this time, we will not be implementing a complete “lock down”.  A most effective way to prevent introduction of this virus into our community is to control the number of guests, and to screen those who do visit. If at all possible, please do not visit. If you do visit, please cooperate with our visitor screening. I also suggest that residents not leave our community, but if they choose to, be very careful while out. Keep the recommended social distance from others, stay away from others who are ill, minimize time out, and stay away from large groups. Very important….Keep calm, wash your hands. If you are ill, STAY AWAY.

These are some of the steps we have implemented:

  1. Staff have received in-service training specific to Covid-19, prevention, and handwashing. Staff will continue to receive in-service training and will be updated as soon as possible after new information is received or our processes are updated
  2. There are notices on all entrances with brief information about Covid-19 and general infection control. There are folders inside each entrance with basic Covid-19 information
  3. We are communicating regularly with our Corporate office to discuss strategies
  4. We are having regular, at least four days/week, director meetings to discuss new information, any needed changes to our strategy, staff and resident well-being updates
  5. We have implemented enhanced and frequent sanitization of door handles, internal and external, hand rails, public restrooms, and frequently touched surfaces
  6. We have a supply of personal protective equipment to include gloves, gowns, general use face masks, and N 95 masks
  7. We have a supply of disposable dishware
  8. Our kitchen has enhanced the cleaning of surfaces and dishware beyond the standard regulations
  9. Larger groups who provide entertainment have been canceled. We will continue to have single, screened outside entertainers and activities provided by our staff. There may be fewer activities offered due to our efforts to manage our Covid-19 strategy
  10. Although we discourage visitors, we will not prohibit visitors who meet our screening criteria at this time. If we determine that it is necessary, we will prohibit visitors at a later date. ALL visitors, staff, hospice, home health, vendors, agency staffing, and any other guests will be screened upon entry. We ask that each person visiting our community to sanitize hands on entry and exit. Hand sanitizer stations have been installed. Screening will include questions such as: Have you been coughing, had a sore throat, been short of breath, traveled outside of Oklahoma in the last 30 days. We will check your temperature and document it, and ask for a signature. If any guest flags as a “risk”, a nurse will be contacted for further discussion prior to allowing entrance. Please remember, although this is inconvenient, we are trying to protect our residents and staff
  11. No staff member, outside provider, or agency staff member will be allowed to work if our screening indicates a risk for Covid-19 transmission
  12. Please check the CDC website regularly for guidance:  www.CDC.gov

A message from Jessica Guillory, Executive Director

Covid-19 Virus precautions

I would like to inform all residents and family of to inform you of the precautions in place at Sommerset Neighborhood Assisted Living & Memory Care. Our first concern is the safety and wellbeing of our residents. Our team is keeping informed of Center for Disease Control, LeadingAge, Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Assisted Living Association and Haverland Carter LifeStyle Group recommendations and implementing precautions that make sense for our community.

Effective at 5PM Friday March 13, 2020, all entrances will be locked except the main entrance. All visitors will be asked general screening questions to determine their possible exposure and have their temperature checked. After hours a number will be posted for you to use your cellphone for access. Please call the number posted and wait for staff to assist you with screening. Please sanitize your hands on entrance and exit from the community.

If you feel ill, been to a part of the country with outbreak, or out of the country in the last 30-days, please consider not visiting until you have been asymptomatic for 14 consecutive days. 

Please remember this is all an effort to protect you and your loved ones and those who provide care to them.

Thank you