COVID-19 Update

During the COVID-19 pandemic, St. Teresa Rehabilitation & Nursing Center continues to take every measure possible to protect the safety, health and well-being of our residents and staff. On this page, you find timely updates, current COVID-19 testing data, information on our comprehensive response plan, and resources for family members to stay connected with loved ones.

If you have any questions, please call 603-668-2373 or contact us here.

Adapting to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged us in ways like never before, but has also shown us that hard work and dedication to our residents and their families is unbreakable. And that no matter what is ahead, our steadfast commitment remains supporting one another – and getting through this together.

While this has been an extremely difficult time for our residents, families and staff, it is also a time of opportunity. We will continue to adapt, as we must, along with everyone else, and build on what we learned, particularly with ways on how we can further enhance our care for residents. The past two years taught us that telemedicine can be very effective as visits can be conducted sooner without waiting for the doctor to come in, resulting in faster treatment. We uncovered new ways to communicate with our residents and loved ones, via Zoom meetings, FaceTime, website updates and weekly letters. Early in the pandemic, when in-person visits were not possible, we offered window visits, virtual visits with computer tablets, outdoor visits when weather permitted, and parades where families and friends could drive by, hold up signs, and wave to their loved ones who sat outside watching. We are utilizing social media to provide more transparent views into daily life here, sharing photos of residents sending greetings to their families, celebrating special occasions or taking part in our many life enrichment programs.

As was the priority on day one, we are committed to fostering as much family involvement as possible while following the safety requirements given to us by the state and the federal government. We remain hopeful and optimistic for the future and will continue to support our cherished residents and families as best we can – each and every single day.

Updated Visitor Policy

We are pleased to be able to liberalize visitation at this time. The pandemic has taken its toll and everyone is craving some normalcy again. We want your visits to be meaningful and support our residents’ physical, mental, and psycho-social well-being. However, as much as we all wish the pandemic was over, it is not. In fact, numbers have risen exponentially again, nursing homes are experiencing outbreaks, and community transmission remains high. Therefore, we need to implement safety measures to protect you while you are visiting, protect the residents in our care and protect our employees who have worked tirelessly throughout the course of this pandemic. The Core Principles of Infection Control must be followed at all times during your visit.

Core Principles of Infection Control

  • Please practice good hand hygiene at all times while in the nursing home. Alcohol gel will be provided as you enter the facility and there are alcohol based hand rub stations throughout the facility for your use. Please ask the staff if you are unsure where to find alcohol gel.
  • A medical grade mask will be provided to you. Please make sure you wear this mask at all times during your visit, with the exceptions as noted below.
  • Physical distancing of 6 feet is also strongly encouraged, with exceptions listed below.
  • You will receive education and a copy of this education at the time of your visit and will be asked to sign acknowledgement that you have received education about visit expectations and infection control.
  • You may also refer to signage posted throughout the facility and ask staff for clarification as necessary.
  • Visits do not need to be scheduled in advance. We would appreciate calling ahead for visits after hours or at peak times such as during mealtimes, so we can ensure that there are not too many visitors in the same area for everyone’s safety.
  • You will be asked if you have been vaccinated. You are not required to answer this but it is helpful to us to know this information for the safety of the community. We strongly advise all our visitors to be vaccinated for the protection of all our residents, visitors and employees. If you have any questions about vaccination, or would like any additional information we would be happy to help you with this. Please ask to see our Director of Nursing, Assistant Director of Nursing or Infection Preventionist for vaccination information.
  • If you decline to disclose your vaccination status we must assume you are not vaccinated and you will need to keep your mask on at all times during your visit, even when you are alone with your loved one in their room.
  • You will be offered COVID testing. For your convenience we have rapid COVID testing available to all visitors at no cost to you. The test takes just a few minutes to process. It is not required that you be tested before your visit. It is optional.
  • We no longer require screening before scheduling a visit as the visits no longer need to be scheduled in advance. When you arrive for a visit you and your party will be screened at that time. If anyone in your party displays does not meet the screening criteria their visit will be postponed until screening criteria are met.
  • If anyone in your party is not able to understand visitation guidelines or infection control measures, that person must be accompanied by someone who can ensure that infection prevention measures will be maintained, or the nursing home reserves the right to monitor the visit.
  • If anyone in your party refuses to adhere to the safety and infection control measures during the visit, that person may be asked to leave and future visits may be restricted.
  • You will be given a fresh medical grade mask to wear during your visit. Additional PPE will be available (gowns, gloves, eye protection) and offered based on community transmission or the presence of COVID-19 cases in the nursing home. You may also request any of these items when you arrive for your visit.
  • The PPE provided to you should be worn and maintained throughout the entire visit.
  • Visits may occur in residents’ rooms or in visiting areas. The appropriate area will be discussed with you at the time of your visit and will depend on the number of visitors in any area.
  • We ask that you not stop to chat with any other residents or family members while you are here. Please stay in the designated area with the resident you are here to see.
  • You will need to wear the mask provided to you and physically distance during your visit at all times while you are in the facility during times of substantial or high community transmission, with the following exceptions:
    1. During times of moderate or low community transmission, if you, and the resident you are visiting are both vaccinated and you both understand the risk that even vaccinated individuals can develop and transmit COVID, you may remove your mask only while you are in the private visiting area, or in a private room. If you are visiting in a shared room, and the roommate is present you may not remove your mask. If you are visiting in a public area you may not remove your mask.
    2. During times of substantial or high community transmission please keep your mask on at all times unless you and the resident you are visiting are eating a meal together in the resident’s private room or other private location. This may need to be arranged ahead of your visit. Please check with the nursing home in advance if you wish to dine with your loved one
    3. If your loved one is severely immunocompromised, you may not remove your mask and must maintain physical distancing. Please check with your nurse if you are uncertain of your loved one’s medical risk.
    4. We understand how therapeutic it can be for our residents to have pet visits. We are a pet friendly organization. Pets are welcome as long as they are up to date on their shots and are contained. Dogs must be leashed or in a suitable carrier. Cats must be contained in a carrier. Please see our Life Enrichment Director or administration for additional pet visit guidelines.
  • Visiting is allowed, though not recommended, during a COVID outbreak, and/or if your loved one is on quarantine. If you are visiting a resident who is positive for COVID, or in quarantine the visit must occur in the resident room. The resident and visitors must wear medical facemasks at all times and any additional PPE you are asked to wear by the staff.

COVID-19 Testing: Current Update

Residents Week ending December 31, 2021 Since March 01, 2020
# tested 1 572
# tested positive 0 31
# tested negative 1 541
# of pending test results 0 0
# hospitalized due to COVID-19 0 0
# treated in the facility due to COVID-19 0 31
# of deaths due to COVID-19 0 11
# with respiratory symptoms 0
Staff Week Ending December 31, 2021 Since March 01, 2020
# tested 18 4,248
# tested positive 0 29
# tested negative 18 4,219
# of pending test results 0 0
# with respiratory symptoms 0

Recent Updates to Family Members

COVID-19 Symptoms

In recent weeks, the CDC has expanded the list of symptoms of COVID-19. While this list is not inclusive and guidance continues to evolve, an updated published list of symptoms and timeframes are as follows:

  • Fever is not a reliable indicator. If present, it may manifest only with mild elevations in temperature.
  • COVID-19 may begin with various types of cough without fever, sore throat, diarrhea, abdominal pain, headache, body aches, back pain and fatigue.
  • It can also present with severe body aches and exhaustion.
  • A reliable early hint is loss of the sense of smell in the first days of disease onset.
  • In serious COVID-19, shortness of breath is a critical differentiator from other common illnesses.
  • Almost no one develops shortness of breath, a cardinal sign of the illness, in the first day or two of disease onset.
  • Shortness of breath can appear four or more days after onset of other symptoms.
  • The first days after shortness of breath begins are a critical period that requires close and frequent monitoring of patients by telemedicine visits or in-person exams.
  • The most critical variable to monitor is how the shortness of breath changes over time. Oxygen saturation levels can also be a valuable clue. Blood oxygen levels can drop precipitously with exertion, even in previously healthy people.
  • A small number of people may never develop shortness of breath. Instead, they may have other symptoms of low oxygen levels, including dizziness or falling.
  • Anxiety is common among patients with viral symptoms suggestive of COVID-19, and anxiety can also induce shortness of breath.

Thank you for your patience and understanding at this time. If you have any questions, please call 603-668-2373 or contact us here.