Since the dawn of the COVID-19 outbreak, health experts and researchers have both agreed that there is a strong likelihood of a second wave. While there is still a lot to learn about how the virus behaves, we have a much better understanding of it now than we did when it first spread. With that knowledge, we are going to be better equipped and prepared for a potential second wave, if it should arrive. Here are some of the ways we will be ready.
Testing is the name of the game when it comes to limiting outbreaks and controlling the impact of COVID-19. At the onset of the virus, testing was extremely difficult to get your hands on. Health experts spoke to the importance of testing in the fight against COVID-19 by saying, “It’s crucial of course to help treat, isolate or hospitalize people who are infected. Testing also is important in the bigger public health picture on mitigation efforts, helping investigators characterize the prevalence, spread and contagiousness of the disease.” Now, our communities and corporate office are all equipped with plentiful tests to ensure that we remain vigilant and aware of any positive cases and act accordingly to limit the spread of the virus.
Better Knowledge of Safety Procedures
In addition to more readily available testing, we are also much more educated and aware of the proper safety procedures to keep our residents, associates and their families safe from the virus. As we are all aware, the information on COVID-19 has evolved a lot over a short period of time and certain things wound up being proven ineffective, while others were proven to be more effective. New safety procedures have been put in place such as wearing proper protective equipment at all times, limiting in-person contact wherever possible and frequent and proper cleaning procedures have all been put into place, based on recommendations from the CDC. We have acted decisively from day one to remain informed with all new data from health experts and local government officials to ensure that you and your loved ones are as safe as possible.
We are Acclimated to the “New Normal”
A phrase that has been thrown around quite a lot over the past few months has been the “new normal.” An example of how we have created a new normal is that while certain things, such as group activities and certain in-person visits, have had to be put on hold for a while, we have adapted and created a “new normal” with regular video calls and one-on-one activities in their place. Mental health experts spoke to the importance of normalcy and routine for the wellbeing of those in our care by saying, “The COVID-19 pandemic has replaced packed schedules with unstructured time that can be detrimental to good mental health. The structure of even small daily routines become important patterns and expectations that give us just enough positive stress to get through a day with a sense of purpose and well-being.” The hard work of creating that new sense of normalcy has already been done so, if a new wave of COVID-19 should come around, we will be much more prepared to adapt and retain the “new normal” that may bring.
Our Heroes Have Overcome Fear
We are not completely out of the woods yet in regards to fear and anxiety related to being an essential worker during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we have found that our staff is much less scared than they were at the onset of the virus. That is, naturally, due to the fact that they have been bravely and selflessly reporting to work on a daily basis and have started to overcome those fears that were originally associated with coming to work. Our Administrator, Steven Salvanto, at Spring Hills Post-Acute Care Livingston discussed this by saying, “The team has changed. In the beginning, we all were scared because it was the fear of the unknown. Now that things have become more routine and we have the proper processes and procedures in place, I think the knowledge keeps people more in focus and it really reduces the stress level.”