Message from the New Jersey Department of Health for Long Term Care Providers
Please see the below information from the New Jersey Department of Health
Long-term Care Facilities who have a confirmed case of COVID-19 should consider the following immediate action to prevent further spread to their residents and staff: Follow all current CMS guidance regarding the restriction of visitors and non-essential healthcare personnel, except in certain compassionate-care situations STOP current communal dining and all group activities such as internal and external group activities Implement active screening of residents and staff for fever and respiratory symptoms. Remember that older adults may manifest symptoms of infection differently and that other symptomology should also be assessed at minimum, daily. Vital signs should include heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, pain and pulse oximetry. The facility staff should have a heightened awareness for any change in baseline in their residents.
Close the unit to new admissions except as needed to cohort ill individuals or staff Consider closure of the facility to new admissions Consider implementing universal use of facemask for HCP while in the facility Encourage residents to remain in their room. If multiple cases are present restrict residents (to the extent possible) to their rooms except for medically necessary purposes Mask all residents (who can tolerate masks) who are symptomatic when providing direct care; if masks are limited or not tolerated use of a tissue to cover the nose and mouth is appropriate.
Adhere to internal environmental cleaning protocols to ensure appropriate measures are being taken to clean and disinfect where appropriate including high-touch surfaces and all shared medical equipment (e.g., lifts, blood pressure cuffs, medication carts). Consider increasing the frequency of cleaning in the facility.
Quarantine and monitor exposed contacts including healthcare workers and roommates
Remember to report any new cases or persons suspected of COVID-19 to NJDOH and LHD
For more information and ongoing updates please visit:
NJDOH: General COVID-19 Information: https://www.nj.gov/health/cd/topics/ncov.shtml
NJDOH: Key Messaging to Long-term Care Facilities (LTCF) for COVID-19: https://www.nj.gov/health/cd/documents/topics/NCOV/NcOv_LINCS_LTCF_Key%20Messages_03032020.108103.pdf
CMS: Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Nursing Homes (REVISED): https://www.cms.gov/files/document/3-13-2020-nursing-home-guidance-covid-19.pdf
CDC: Preparing for COVID-19: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/healthcare-facilities/prevent-spread-in-long-term-care-facilities.html
For COVID 19 updates, please continue to check the DOH we site for routinely updated information. https://www.nj.gov/health/cd/topics/ncov.shtml
J. David Weidner
Director, Emergency Management