Coronavirus update 04/08/2020
Coronavirus pandemic update April 8, 2020
Across Genesis HealthCare, we continue to focus on protecting the health and safety of our patients, residents and our heroic employees during this pandemic. This is a serious, rapidly evolving situation affecting every community, hospital and nursing home across the nation. We are learning and adapting to new developments every day, and we will continue to find ways to address unprecedented challenges.
For example, as you have likely seen in the news, there is a national problem with shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) and the availability and speed of testing.
Fortunately, we’ve been able to maintain an adequate supply of PPE – standard face masks, gowns, gloves and N95 respirators – by shifting supplies among our facilities and resourceful sourcing. We have also been following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommendations to re-use and extend the use of face masks. However, as this pandemic expands, this is not a sustainable solution.
On the testing front, our laboratory partners throughout the country are doing all they can to provide testing kits and results to our facilities when they are needed. However, we need the Federal government and each state’s health department to ensure that testing is available and test results are prioritized at nursing homes. We are seeing some states take welcome action on this front for nursing home residents, patients and workers, such as Massachusetts, Maryland and Rhode Island.
We will continue to collaborate with local, state and federal health officials to push for nursing homes to be prioritized for both PPE and testing and work to promote this cause in the media.
To the families and other loved ones of those in our care and our employees – who are on the front lines every day – you can also help by appealing to your legislators to push for this. To find your legislator, visit this site and enter your address.
Meanwhile, we are working round the clock to keep our patients, residents and staff everyone healthy and as safe as we possibly can.
Dr. Richard Feifer
Chief Medical Officer