Beatitudes Campus continues to see an increase in cases, which has doubled last week’s number of cases. As of today, we have 31 cases on campus – 20 staff and 11 residents. The individuals infected are across all campus areas. We continue to aggressively test staff and residents in our licensed areas as it is one of our tools to mitigate the spread.
On Monday, December 7, we tested 273 staff and contractors for COVID-19. We received 272 negative results and one positive result. This staff person who was positive works in maintenance, and contact tracing for possible exposure has been completed. We send our prayers for recovery to this staff person.
On Tuesday, Oct. 27, we tested 268 staff members as part of our testing program. We received negative results for 266 staff and two samples were not useable, so the two staff members will be retested. Earlier this week, we were informed that a server in Plaza View tested positive; this individual is at home quarantining and contract tracing for possible exposures is being conducted. The resident and staff member who tested positive earlier this month are both out of the hospital and continue to recover. Our prayers are with them.
Check bcampus.org for a current updated list of available amenities for residents.
BEWARE – SCAMS are on the rise again! There are thousands of new SCAMS every year and there is no way to keep up with them all (we know, we try!). 2020 has been a most challenging year and scammers are looking to capitalize on every opportunity it presents. Elections, Social Security, IRS, Sweepstakes, Romance, Computer Hacking, Spoofing, Identity Theft, Golden Opportunity, Charity, Medical… the list of potential SCAMS goes on and on.
Due to current, safety and health concerns, campus transportation has reverted to Safeway for our weekly shopping trips and will continue with them until further notice. Some of the reasons we switched from Fry’s to Safeway are issues with safety, unwanted solicitation around the entrance to the store, lack of available assistance from employees/management, constant unavailable carts to use and most importantly cleanliness during our current Covid19 pandemic.
The expanded visitation and staged re-openings we have had in the past few weeks are going well for all areas of our campus. We continuously monitor the coronavirus metrics in our community, so that we can pivot if we need to in order to keep our Beatitudes community of residents, staff and families safe. In the next week or two, we will present our guidelines for holiday celebrations.
As I have been doing some preliminary reading and preparation for our upcoming Bible Study on the Book of Proverbs (which you can watch on Channel 1-2, 3:00pm, beginning on Wednesday, October 28th), one verse stood out to me, particularly when rendered in contemporary language: “You will say the wrong thing if you talk too much – so be sensible and watch what you say” (Prov. 10:19).
Starting Tuesday, October 20, we are re-opening the Bistro for dining for Independent Living residents only for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Reservations must be made. The dining room will be laid out in compliance with the CDC and state guidelines. Dining staff will be temperature checking all residents who are eating in the Bistro. Residents will be social distanced, two per table and we will accommodate a maximum of 40 residents. Outdoor seating will also be available.
We are pleased to announce that for our Independent Living residents, families will be able to directly deliver their packages to their family members’ apartments, starting Monday, October 12.
Late last night, the country was in disbelief as we heard the news that President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19. Last Tuesday, September 29, we tested 233 staff for COVID-19. Tuesday night, we were informed that a caregiver from Beatitudes at Home tested positive for COVID-19 according to their antigen test. Guidelines state that all positive antigen results require confirmation by a PCR test and we received the PCR confirmation today.
The United States continues to lead the world in confirmed cases and deaths from COVID-19. This week, we reached a grim milestone in the coronavirus pandemic, with over 7 million (7,005,746 is the actual figure) confirmed COVID-19 cases and 203,240 confirmed COVID-19 deaths. According to Johns Hopkins University, Arizona ranks #5 in cases per 100,000 population (2,940 cases per 100,000 individuals) and #9 in deaths per 100,000 population (75 deaths per 100,000 individuals). As a country, we must be ever vigilant as we head into the fall season. Many infectious disease experts are warning of a potential surge of coronavirus cases as we enter a season of cooler weather and warn of a long-feared “second wave” of infections unless we continue to practice the public health protocols of masks, social distancing and hand hygiene.
I know we are all tired of reading statistics and pouring through endless data, but it’s the data that guide us in our decisions. At Beatitudes Campus, we must remain vigilant in monitoring the community transmission of the virus and the trends. All of our decisions for expanding visitations, off-campus visits and openings within the campus are made in stages and with scientific data at hand. In the last two weeks, we were able to allow outdoor visitation in our licensed areas. However, with a resident testing positive this week and a staff member testing positive, we are suspending visitation in the Piper Early Memory Support neighborhood for the near future.
We are allowing limited visitations from family for our Independent Living residents. You can view the visitor guidelines on our website (https://beatitudescampus.org/beatitudes-family/ and click on “Visitor Guidelines”). Please note all required forms for visitation are located there, too. This week, we have been able to expand off-campus outings for Independent Living residents to include visits to family and friends in gatherings of 10 people or less.
I want to thank all the residents, families and staff who have followed the public health guidance that we all know – wear your mask, keep physically distant and wash your hands. It is because of your adherence to these important guidelines that we are able to ease some of our restrictions, so please keep that up. These measures, along with testing, are the best tools we have right now to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
On Tuesday, September 22, we conducted another COVID-19 testing of our employees and all 338 results are negative. Because of previous week’s staff testing, with one positive result of a caregiver who worked in Early Memory Support, we re-tested all Piper Early Memory Support residents. A resident from that neighborhood tested positive and remains asymptomatic. The individual remains in isolation in the room right now and will be transferred to our COVID-19 unit in the Agelink building as soon as possible to complete the quarantine period. You can view the data from the campus in the dashboard at the end of this letter. I’d like to take a moment to reflect on the life of an icon in American history – Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Justice Ginsburg spent her life in pursuit of an equal world. She fought for those who had no voice and was a fearless trailblazer and advocate for equality of all people and was a pioneering champion of women’s rights. Justice Ginsburg has said that a meaningful life means living for one’s family and one’s community, not for oneself. By those standards, she certainly lived a profoundly meaningful life and the ways she changed our lives will never be forgotten. America is a better place because of her service. She fought for the best version of ourselves. She hoisted the ambitions of millions of American women. I know that I wouldn’t be President and CEO of Beatitudes Campus were it not for Justice Ginsburg and her crusade for freedom and equality. I’m inspired by her life and legacy. It is now up to all of us to continue her fight and working together toward true equality.
While we are looking forward to affording more social opportunities to residents off-campus, it will be more important than ever for Independent Living residents to communicate with one another and take responsibility for knowing the social patterns of the residents they choose to commune with.
This past week marked a significant milestone for our Beatitudes community, as family visits began. I am so happy for our residents and family members to have the opportunity to enjoy in-person visits again!
Visitations for the Health Care Center and Assisted Living areas will begin on Wednesday, September 9. Please note that visitations are by appointment only in these areas of campus. For Independent Living, visitations will begin on Thursday, September 10; appointments are not necessary for families and friends of residents in Independent Living.
For our Independent Living residents, we are phasing in some openings within campus. As you already know, the salons in Independent Living opened on Monday and three fitness classes are now being offered this week. And, starting this week, we have expanded our list of “approved” trips off campus to include salons, in-store grocery shopping, indoor bank and postal services, vehicle service shops and the Motor Vehicle Department.
We have completed many COVID-19 tests this week. Of the 223 staff who were tested with the PCR (nasal swab) test, 221 came back negative, and 2 are still pending results. Also, the Arizona Department of Health Services tested residents and staff in Plaza View Assisted Living and Early Memory Support.
The rolling seven-day average for newly reported cases was 1,146.57 yesterday, August 10, the lowest it has been since June 10. The seven-day average of newly reported deaths dipped to 53.57, the lowest since July 11.