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Bethany Lodge

Visitor Policy

This visiting policy will balance the following principles:

  • Safety – address the health and safety needs of residents, staff and visitors
  • Emotional Well-Being – support the emotional well-being of residents by reducing potential negative impacts related to social isolation
  • Equitable Access – give equitable access to residents to receive visitors, consistent with their preferences
  • Flexibility – change the policy when necessary (ie – due to an outbreak or as other issues arise)
  • Equality – residents have the right to choose their visitors. Residents and/or their substitute decision makers have the right to designate caregivers
  • Compliance – will comply with applicable government directives including Directives #3 and #5

Caregivers:

Is an essential visitor who is designated by the resident and/or their substitute decision-maker and is visiting to provide direct care to the resident (e.g., supporting feeding, mobility, personal hygiene, cognitive stimulation, communication, meaningful connection, relational continuity and assistance in decision making). Caregivers must be at least 18 years of age.

Examples of caregivers include family members, privately hired caregivers or paid companions and translators.

Requirements:

  • Must pass active screening
  • Participate in the PPE requirements of the resident/resident’s room – at minimum surgical masking at all times while in the Home.
  • Comply with the home’s IPAC protocols, including putting on and taking off of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and proper mask wearing and hand washing. Wearing of goggles is best practice.
  • Attest in writing that the IPAC education requirement has been met every month.
  • Must also read the home’s visitor policy and engage in training upon starting.

Essential Visitors approved as Caregivers do not have to schedule their visits and may visit anytime. They are not required to social distance to their resident but must have mask on at all times.

Access to Residents in Isolation or Home in an Outbreak:

Essential visitors are the only type of visitors allowed when a resident is in isolation or the community is in an outbreak (subject to York Region public health restrictions).

Support Workers:

Is a person performing essential support services (e.g – maintenance/repair or healthcare services)

Person visiting a very ill or palliative resident:

Undergo screening, proof of negative COVID-19 test and vaccine requirements not required and no restrictions on number of visitors

Government Inspectors:

With a statutory right to enter a long-term care home to carry out their duties. No requirements.

A general visitor is a person who is not an essential visitor.

  • To provide services
  • For social reasons

There are three types of General visits: Virtual, Indoor, and Outdoor.

General visitors including those 5 years or younger. General visitors under the age of 14 years must be accompanied by an adult and must follow all applicable public health measures that are in place at the care community.Outdoor/indoor general visitors will be provided with instructions at screening including requirements for the visit, PPE, and hand hygiene. Visits will be paused and rescheduled in the event of an outbreak in the Home. With the assistance of essential caregivers and the life enrichment staff, virtual visits can continue. All general visits are scheduled through online scheduling or by the assistance of the life enrichment department.

Virtual Visits:

offered with assistance of our life enrichment team to ensure residents access to connections with family and friends.

Outdoor Visits:

By appointment in dedicated outdoor spaces at the home. These visits support the face-to-face connection with no limit on visitors. Visitors must pass active screening, maintain social distancing and wear a mask throughout the visit.

Indoor Visits:

By appointment in dedicated indoor spaces at the home. Up to 4 visitors, each required to pass active screening and testing. Visitors must maintain social distancing and wear a surgical mask provided by the Home throughout the visit.

Documentation requirements:

  • Active Screening log

Residents can go be away from the home as follows:

Same Day Absences

  • Medical appointments – arranged through the Nursing Administrative Assistant
  • Other Absences – booked online or through the life enrichment department
  • Same Day Absences are not permitted during an outbreak (depending on unit) and if the region is in lockdown.
Requirements:
  1. preferably transported by an essential caregiver
  2. residents must wear a medical mask at all times when outside the home (exceptions made for medical conditions)
  3. and practice physical distancing

When they return, residents will be actively screened but are not required to be tested or to self- isolate unless exposed to a known positive case.

Overnight Absences

Overnight absences are at the discretion of the Director of Care/Designate and decided on a case-by-case basis based on safety factors like the risk associated with the absence and the ability of the home to help residents self-isolate upon return if needed. Overnight Absences are not permitted during an outbreak (depending on unit) and if the region is in lockdown.

Requirements:
  1. preferably transported by an essential caregiver
  2. residents must wear a medical mask at all times when outside the home (exceptions made for medical conditions)
  3. and practice physical distancing
  4. unvaccinated residents self-isolate for 10 days when they return to the home and are tested on day 5.

Residents can go be away from the home as follows:

Overnight absences are at the discretion of the Director of Care/Designate and decided on a case-by-case basis based on safety factors like the risk associated with the absence and the ability of the home to help residents self-isolate upon return if needed. Overnight Absences are not permitted during an outbreak (depending on unit) and if the region is in lockdown.

  1. to end a visit by any visitor who fails to adhere to the home’s visitor policy or the Code of Conduct
  2. to temporarily prohibit a visitor who fails to follow the visitor policy or the Code of Conduct

Reasonable efforts will be made to avoid these actions.