This page will be updated with any news as well as our current policy and procedures related to the prevention of the spread of COVID-19. We are committed to keeping our residents, employees and greater community safe and healthy. We can best do this by being informed and prepared.
Update: April 25, 2020
In an abundance of caution, Carolina Meadows undertook additional steps to test several staff and residents who were in close and sustained contact with the asymptotic employee who tested positive for COVID 19 this week. As of this morning, the results of the expanded testing revealed all individuals to be negative for COVID-19. We remained committed to our aggressive prevention and screening protocols to protect our communities from exposure to COVID-19.
UPDATE: April 24, 2020
Carolina Meadows has been working diligently to do all we can to protect the health of our residents and team members. We want to share how the coronavirus is impacting our community and the steps we are taking to address it.
Carolina Meadows has had two diagnosed COVID-19 cases among team members. The first case has recovered and been cleared by a physician. The second case is active with the employee quarantined at home on paid administrative leave. Both of these employees had diligently followed all of our safety practices.
There are NO positive cases within our residents at this time. Please know that we will maintain transparency in our communication around COVID-19 test results for anyone associated with Carolina Meadows.
The Chatham County Health Department has been notified of these employee cases and has provided expert guidance. We have identified team members and residents who may be impacted, and have notified appropriate residents and responsible parties.
The Health Department has validated that we have implemented every necessary and recommended measure to safeguard the health of our residents and our team and to limit the spread of the virus. We are working closely with our medical director, Dr. Donna Miller, and following the guidelines of the CDC, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. We continue to take aggressive measures to protect residents and team members from exposure, as their health and safety are our top priority.
To our residents, families and friends, we express our sincere gratitude. Thank you for your patience, cooperation and understanding as we have had to implement many changes, including restricting visitors. We encourage you to communicate regularly with your loved ones through phone calls, video chat, social media and other virtual means.
We also want to acknowledge the tremendous job our team members are doing. They are going above and beyond every day and their commitment to Carolina Meadows is nothing less than heroic.
We thank you for your continued understanding, support and patience. We’re all in this together – Carolina Meadows Strong!
Current Policies and Procedures
Carolina Meadows Responds to Coronavirus (COVID-19)
At Carolina Meadows, the health and safety of those who live and work on campus is always our highest priority. We are taking unprecedented action to prevent the spread of the virus at our campus. With the full strength of our community’s nearly 35 years of experience and expertise, we are focused on prevention and providing continuity for safe operations. We are acting with an abundance of caution and taking every precautionary measure in response to this serious public health concern. As we navigate this dynamic situation, we are taking reasonable and practical steps to implement necessary preventive measures.
North Carolina Sees Active COVID-19 Cases
North Carolina officials have reported widespread outbreak in our state. Because COVID-19 can take several days to develop and show symptoms, but can be spread by people who are not showing symptoms, it’s difficult to know how many more people may have been exposed.
Carolina Meadows is Closed to Non-essential Visitors: Effective March 14, 2020
Family and Visitor Restrictions in the Fairways and Pines
As part of our ongoing efforts to protect our campus from the spread of COVID-19, access to our continuing care neighborhoods is limited to medical and healthcare professionals and essential visitors for certain compassionate care circumstances, such as an end-of-life situation. In addition, effective March 14, we are now adhering to the new requirements put forth by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Those protections include:
- Restricting all visitation, except for certain compassionate care circumstances, such as an end-of-life situation. In those cases, visitors will be limited to the specific resident’s room only.
- Screening all staff for COVID-19 symptoms. This includes temperature check.
- Requiring that all essential visitors undergo a temperature check before entering, and wear a surgical mask while in the Pines or Fairways to prevent the spread of germs.
- Asking essential visitors to limit the surfaces they touch and use good hand hygiene to prevent the spread of germs.
- Asking essential visitors to refrain from any physical contact with the residents and staff members. This includes shaking hands, hugging, and kissing.
- Essential visitors are also required to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms every day for 14 days after their visit and are instructed to contact the community’s Administration immediately if they develop flu-like symptoms, a fever, or cough.
- Closure of all dining rooms and adopting in-room dining for all residents in the Fairways and Pines. Residents that require assistance to dine will have monitoring in place.
- Canceling of all group activities and moving to in-room engagement.
- Note that essential visitors will be directed to a single-entry point in both the Fairways (front entrance) and Pines (hillside entrance nearest the medical practice) where they will need to be screened prior to entry. The Club Center entrance to the Pines has been closed. Additional operational adjustments have been made proactively to cancel all group activities, communal dining and implement active screening of residents and staff for fever and respiratory symptoms.
Family and Visitor Restrictions for Independent Living
As part of our ongoing efforts to protect our campus from the spread of COVID-19, we implemented temporary visitor restrictions to close the campus to all non-essential visitors until further notice. The campus is closed to family members as well as vendors that are privately hired by residents to perform work inside a resident’s home will not be permitted (aside from private caregivers). Access to our campus is limited to essential visitors only.
Who is defined as an essential visitor*?
- Caregivers and aides providing direct care and support within a resident’s home. (Name must be on an authorized list approved by Kevin McLeod or Ben Cornthwaite)
- Compassionate care or end-of-life situations for residents receiving hospice or end-of-life care. (Name must be on an authorized list approved by Kevin McLeod or Ben Cornthwaite)
- Those delivering necessary supplies, packages, groceries or medications to a resident’s doorstep. (Doorstep deliveries are not required to be on an authorized list). Delivery vehicles such as Amazon, local restaurants, newspaper, pharmacy etc. will be permitted to enter and are not require to be on an authorized list.
Essential Visitor Requirements
The North entrance (employee entrance) will be staffed to control and restrict entrance for all arriving to Carolina Meadows. Residents (including EA), employees, essential visitors* and campus vendors will only be permitted entry.
- All entrants will be required to undergo an enhanced screening at the covered entrance to the clubhouse (including a temperature check with a touchless thermometer).
Resident Travel Advisories—Stay Home
It is strongly recommended that residents remain on campus and not visit public places, and that they postpone all upcoming travel, including flights, cruises, and third party transportation. Leaving campus should be limited to essential medical appointments only. Leaving campus only increases the risk of potential exposure for the entire campus. Residents who do choose to venture outside the gates will be required to pass through the screening checkpoint upon return. We request all residents to maintain physical distance, while remaining socially connected. Virtual visitation (Skype, FaceTime) and phone calls are great ways to remain connected.
Modified Operations to Encourage Social Distancing
Proactive action is being taken to further social distancing efforts (less group contact between individuals) and minimize exposure opportunities.
Off-Campus Transportation Canceled, Medical Appointments Will Continue: Effective Mon, March 16, 2020
Because our residents represent the population most vulnerable to COVID-19, and given the progressive spread of the coronavirus throughout the US, we strongly recommend that residents remain on campus and not visit public spaces. Off-campus transportation services have been canceled effective Monday, March 16th, with the exception of off-campus medical appointments that will continue as scheduled. On-campus transportation will continue for essential needs.
Dining Operations Provide Daily Doorstep Deliveries: Effective Tuesday, March 26, 2020
All Carolina Meadows dining venues have closed their dine-in service until further notice. A new in-home dining program is being implemented so that residents can safely enjoy meals in the comfort of their own home. If you have specific questions, please check our Frequently Asked Questions Guide or a member of our dining team at (919) 370-7225. Our wait staff team will call each resident between 11am and 2pm to take meal orders for same-day delivery between 4pm and pm.
- The Carolina Meadows Home Shopping Program offers a wonderful assortment of grocery items as well as sundry items that you may need, including hard to find items on retail shelves. Residents are now able and encouraged to place home shopping orders here. Orders can also continue to be placed through calling the Bakeshop at 919-370-7225. These orders are fulfilled within 48 hours from order date and delivered to your home (targeted time for deliveries between 10am-noon).
On-Campus Amenities and Activities: Effective Monday, March 16, 2020
We have canceled all campus-sponsored group activities and events. We recommend that resident gatherings should be avoided or limited in size and frequency. Resident get-togethers in a private residence are not advised until further notice. In keeping with current recommendations from health officials, on-site amenities including the fitness center, pool and salon are closed. There will also be no access to community rooms or gathering spaces at this time. Though we encourage physical distance, we also advise social connection—stay connected by phone or virtually through Skype or FaceTime.
On-campus Medical Practice Launches Telehealth Services: Effective Monday, March 23, 2020
Please continue to call the practice for medical needs (919) 370-7102 from 8:30am – 4:30pm. Medical providers will postpone routine appointments to ensure availability for the most critical needs. The Carolina Meadows medical providers will begin offering telehealth services to residents the week of March 23, 2020. We look forward to providing residents with an easy-to-use, accessible benefit that can help keep residents healthy while helping to contain the community spread of this virus. Carolina Meadows medical providers will be able to use telehealth to diagnose, discuss treatment plans, and prescribe necessary medications. Complete authorization for telehealth here.
Housekeeping: We have increased our common area cleaning and disinfecting and have temporarily suspended all residential housekeeping services.
Genesis Rehab: Rehab services will continue but it is advised you call (919) 370-7110 to confirm your appointment and to discuss an individual plan.
Being diligent with prevention is key to keeping all members of our community safe. We are asking residents, staff, and guests to follow these proven measures to protect themselves and others from COVID-19:
- If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, stay at home and contact your medical provider, inlcuing the on-campus medical practice.
- Avoid touching your face to reduce the spread of germs
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, dry them with a paper towel, and then use it to turn off the tap and open the door
- Cover your cough with a tissue, promptly discard it, and wash your hands
- Avoid contact with sick people and those who have recently traveled to high-risk areas
- Avoid crowds and practice safe distancing (6 feet)
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces with a regular household cleaning product
These guidelines have been posted in highly visible locations throughout our community and shared via consistent, ongoing communications across multiple channels.
External Resources: Center For Disease Control (CDC)
Our robust preparedness measures include proactive, comprehensive communications to residents, staff, family members and visitors to keep them informed about the coronavirus and educated on best practices for protecting themselves and others, as well as any changes to community operations and services.
In addition to extensive posted signage throughout our community, we are committed to providing timely and transparent correspondence as we continue to monitor this rapidly evolving situation.
If you are a member of the news media with questions about Carolina Meadows response to COVID-19, please contact a member of our Executive Leadership:
Kevin McLeod, President & CEO (919) 370-7123; firstname.lastname@example.org
Ben Cornthwaite, Executive Vice President & COO (919) 370-7256; email@example.com