When owners, operators and caregivers are armed with the right resources, instead of rumors, residential assisted living homes can save lives. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) highlights recommendations to keep seniors safe and prevent the spread of COVID-19. The Residential Assisted Living National Association outlines these recommendations in order to articulate the best practices to RAL home operators. Do you have a plan in place to protect your business, employees and residents from future pandemics? Every residential assisted living home should start using strategies learned from this pandemic to create an ongoing plan for the future.
Two Important Strategies
1. Defining a structure for planning and decision making:
- Every Residential Assisted Living home needs to incorporate an emergency management plan, that covers the scope of viruses like COVID-19,
- Identifying a team or committee to create preparedness plans.
2. Developing a written COVID-19 plan:
- Copy the COVID-19 preparedness plan and make it available and accessible,
- Review and apply relevant sections of federal, state, regional, or local plans for COVID-19 or in the event of an influenza pandemic,
- Identifies the individuals authorized to implement the plan and the organizational structure.
Elements To Consider When Scripting Your Strategies
Your residential assisted living home must have a pandemic plan that includes a variety of elements. Elements of an effective COVID-19 or pandemic plan must cover every component of the business.
Some examples you should include in your pandemic plan should include the following:
- General information about your RAL home procedures,
- RAL home communication procedures,
- Supplies and resources, to include PPE,
- Identification and management of residents and symptoms,
- Considerations about visitors,
- Occupational health and telehealth services,
- Ongoing education and training,
- Surge capacity for staffing, residents, and supplies
The Right Resources For Senior Care In Crisis Mode
A complete comprehensive Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Preparedness Checklist for Nursing Homes and other Long-Term Care Settings is available on the CDC website.
RAL home operators do not have to go through these difficult processes alone. The Residential Assisted Living National Association advocates for assisted living businesses RALNA supports them with access to legal expertise, continued education, national marketing, group purchasing power and a continual positive voice for the industry. Currently, to keep seniors safe from COVID-19, read our RALNA blogs, Due to COVID-19 Virtual Tours Make Sense.