July 30, 2020 | 2:00 pm

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 7/30/20 2:00pm:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We conducted 1,063 swab tests on Monday, July 27th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  We conducted 1,063 swab tests on Monday, July 27th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  There were seven new staff cases and no new resident between the two facilities.  Two employees at Bethany in 42nd Skilled Care, four employees at Bethany on University Skilled Care and one at Bethany Towers.  All positive residents are moved to a confined COVID-19 skilled care area with designated staff.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting weekly COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, and assisted living residents.  Employees at both Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd will be tested bi-weekly.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Resident testing will be conducted each Monday and the next employee testing dates will be August 10th and August 24th.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing is drive-through in the underground parking garage at Bethany on 42nd and begins at 5:30am and concludes at 5:30pm.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours.  Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.  The test is free of charge.  If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

 

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

 

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers.  We may add or subtract cases as new test results arrive and, due to the timing of the results, they may not be reflected on the State website at the time of this posting.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone in isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type
Bethany Towers Cass Fargo 133 0 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 3 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 0 5 Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.
See Visitation Guidelines

July 27, 2020

Joint Letter to Newspapers

To the Editor:

 

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been urged to protect themselves, their neighbors, and their loved ones amidst the worst global health crisis in generations. After months of physical distancing and staying at home, infections and deaths began to decline across our country.

 

But in the weeks since states began reopening, some steps that were critical to the progress made were abandoned too quickly. We are now watching in real-time as a dramatic uptick in COVID-19 cases is erasing hard-won gains. In some states, hospitals are at or nearing their ICU capacity and shortages of personal protective equipment and testing supplies continue to pose a threat to health care workers and patients alike.

 

While North Dakota is not a high spread state, we want to do everything possible to keep it that way. This is why as physicians, nurses, long term care administrators, hospital and health system leaders, we urge North Dakotans to take the simple steps we know will help stop the spread of the virus: wearing a face mask, maintaining physical distancing, and washing hands. We are not powerless in this public health crisis, and we can defeat it in the same way we defeated previous threats to public health—by allowing science and evidence to shape our decisions and inform our actions.

 

There is a growing body of evidence that face masks help prevent the spread of COVID-19. One study shows the infection rate among employees at Mass General Brigham hospitals dropped significantly once all workers were required to wear face masks. Another study in Missouri shows that wearing a face mask prevented the spread of infection from two hair stylists to their customers.

 

Despite claims otherwise, the prolonged use of face masks when properly worn does not cause CO2 intoxication, oxygen deficiency, or any other harm to the wearer. Surgeons operate for hours wearing them. They don’t have problems. For those who have been waiting for more data before accepting the practice, these findings make it clear: Masks work.

 

The toll of this pandemic is staggering, and it will take months, perhaps years, to truly understand its impact on our country and our way of life. But what is certain – and what the science and evidence tell us – is that COVID-19 is not behind us. Your actions are critical to stop the spread of COVID-19. We must remain vigilant and continue to take steps to mitigate the spread of the virus to protect each other and our loved ones.

 

To those of you who are doing your part in helping turn the tide of this pandemic – thank you. There is only one way we will get through this – together.

 

Your continued partners in health,

 

Tim Blasl, President                                                                  Courtney Koebele, Executive Director

North Dakota Hospital Association                                       North Dakota Medical Association

 

 

Tessa Johnson, MSN, BSN, RN, CDP, President                   Shelly Peterson, President

North Dakota Nurses Association                                         North Dakota Long Term Care Association

 

See Visitation Guidelines

July 17, 2020 | 8:00 am

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 7/17/20 8:00am:

 

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We conducted 1,069 swab tests on Monday, July 13th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  There were five new cases between the two facilities.  One resident at Bethany on University-Skilled Care, one resident at Bethany Towers Assisted Living, two residents at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care and one employee at Bethany on 42nd.  All positive residents are moved to a confined COVID-19 skilled care area with designated staff.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting weekly COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents.  Employees at both Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd will be tested bi-weekly.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Resident testing will be conducted each Monday and the next employee testing dates will be July 27th, August 10th and August 24th.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing is drive-through in the underground parking garage at Bethany on 42nd and begins at 5:30am and concludes at 5:30pm.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours.  Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.  The test is free of charge.  If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

 

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

 

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers.  We may add or subtract cases as new test results arrive and, due to the timing of the results, they may not be reflected on the State website at the time of this posting.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone in isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type
Bethany Towers Cass Fargo 133 1 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 2 1 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 1 0 Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.
See Visitation Guidelines

July 17, 2020 | 8:00 am

Bethany Moving to INDOOR Visitation

Bethany Retirement Living will soon be moving away from outdoor visits, starting July 20th, 2020.  Instead of doing outdoor visits, we highly encourage family members to take advantage of the indoor visitation schedule.  Bethany staff feels that indoor visits have many more advantages over outdoor visits, such as offering a more controlled environment without any variable weather conditions (rain, wind, extreme heat, etc.).  Indoor visitation allows for a more comfortable seating arrangement for the resident and their family as well as easier access to hand hygiene and PPE.  Indoor visits also offer less background noise, a quieter environment, and more privacy for one-to-one visitation.  Please also note that indoor visits are set for a longer time frame as we allow family members to visit for up to an hour versus a half hour for outdoor visits.

 

Please see the attached schedule for indoor visitation hours.  You do not need to make an appointment to visit during these designated visitation times.

See Visitation Guidelines

July 1, 2020 | 8:00 am

Bethany Moving to Phase 2 Visitation

Dear Family and Friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We are pleased to announce we are moving to Phase 2 visitation based on criteria established by the Vulnerable Population Protection Plan (VP3) task force and the recommendations of the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).

Once a facility enters Phase 2, visitation within the facility may be scheduled, and non-medically necessary trips outside the building may occur with the utilization of masks among residents and staff.

Each service area within Bethany Retirement Living has its own unique visitation guidelines.  Please click on the link to the information specific to the area in which your loved one resides.

Please note that outdoor visitation requirements remain the same.

See Visitation Guidelines

July 2, 2020 | 8:00 am

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 7/2/2020, 8:00 am

 

 

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We conducted 1,049 swab tests on Monday, June 29th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There were 4 new cases between both facilities.  One resident at Bethany on University-Skilled Care, one resident at Bethany Towers Basic Care, one resident at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care and one employee at Bethany on 42nd.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Testing will be conducted again on July 13th, July 27th, August 10th and August 24th.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive-through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.  We also added the new resident cases.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type
Bethany Towers Cass Fargo 133 1 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 1 1 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 1 3 Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 25, 2020 | 2:00 pm

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/25/20 2:00pm:

 

 

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We conducted 1,042 swab tests on Monday, June 22nd, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There were 3 new staff cases at Bethany on University, one new resident case at Bethany Towers Assisted Living and one new staff case at Bethany on 42nd.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Testing will be conducted again on June 29th, July 13th, July 27th, August 10th and August 24th.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive-through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany on University Skilled Care, Bethany Gables or Bethany Towers Basic Care.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.  We also added the new resident case.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name                                                  County             City               Facility Bed Size          Current Active Positive Residents         Current Active Positive Staff           Facility type of positive Resident

Bethany Towers               Cass       Fargo       133                                                                     1                     0        Assisted

Bethany on 42nd              Cass       Fargo       116                           0                                        2                     Skilled

Bethany on University   Cass       Fargo       172                                                                     0                     4        Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 24, 2020 | 10:30 am

Phase 1 visitation in progress with plan on moving to Phase 2 in the next 10-14 days.

 

On June 5th, Gov. Doug Burgum signed an executive order that modifies restrictions on visitation at long-term care facilities in North Dakota during the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing for a three phased approach to resuming visitation as outlined in the state’s Vulnerable Population Protection Plan (VP3).  Bethany was given approval to move into Phase 1 and we are now making plans to move into Phase 2 later next week if we are given approval from the State of North Dakota VP3 Taskforce.

 

Phase 1 allows for limited group activities, but residents must practice social distancing.  Scheduled outdoor visits may occur between residents and their families while exercising social distancing.  Anyone visiting must wear clean face masks, stay 6 feet apart and perform proper hand hygiene.  Please contact the Director of Community Life to set up a Skilled Care outside visit or call the Towers or Gables desk to schedule an assisted living or basic care outside visit.

 

Once a facility enters Phase 2, visitation within the facility may be scheduled, and non-medically necessary trips outside the building may occur with the utilization of masks among residents and staff.  Visitations will be restricted to one visitor per resident.  Both the visitor and the resident will be required to wear mask and visitors also adding a face shield.  We strongly encourage all family members to get into the habit of being tested for COVID-19 weekly or as often as offered by the ND Department of Health and Cass County Public Health.  (Outdoor drive-up testing will take place in the west parking lot of the FARGODOME from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 25 and Friday, June 26.)  Once visitation in Phase 2 is allowed, we will ask visitors if they have been tested recently.  If visitors have not been regularly tested, we will change from allowing visitation in a resident’s room to a common space far away from all of the residents’ living area to prevent touching of handrails, door knobs, furniture and other high touch areas residents use.  We cannot risk a massive outbreak in our facilities as we introduce hundreds of people into our buildings.  Many residents who live at Bethany have underlying health conditions, so please take advantage of testing when you have the opportunity.

 

We conducted 1,042 COVID-19 swab tests on Monday, June 22nd, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  The results should be in by Thursday, June 25th.  Our next round of testing is next Monday, June 29th for both residents and employees.  We will be moving from every week testing to every other week testing in July, so our testing dates will be Monday, July 13th and Monday, July 29th.  We will be posting updated information after we receive our testing results.

June 17, 2020 |3:30 PM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/17/20 2:00pm

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We received great results from the 1042 COVID-19 swab tests completed on Monday, June 15th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There were only two new staff cases and one new resident case at Bethany on University-Skilled Care.  The resident was a recent admission from the hospital and was only with us for a very short time, he/she most likely contracted COVID-19 before their stay with us and he/she is already discharging home today.   Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd every Monday in June.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Testing will be conducted every remaining Monday in June—June 22nd and 29th.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive-through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables or Bethany Towers-Basic Care.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.  We also added the new resident case.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name                                                  County             City               Facility Bed Size          Current Active Positive Residents         Current Active Positive Staff           Facility type of positive Resident

Bethany Towers               Cass       Fargo       133                                                                     0                     0        Assisted

Bethany on 42nd              Cass       Fargo       116                           0                                        2                     Skilled

Bethany on University   Cass       Fargo       172                                                                     1                     1        Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 17, 2020 |3:30 PM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/17/20 2:00pm

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We received great results from the 1042 COVID-19 swab tests completed on Monday, June 15th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There were only two new staff cases and one new resident case at Bethany on University-Skilled Care.  The resident was a recent admission from the hospital and was only with us for a very short time, he/she most likely contracted COVID-19 before their stay with us and he/she is already discharging home today.   Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd every Monday in June.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Testing will be conducted every remaining Monday in June—June 22nd and 29th.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive-through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables or Bethany Towers-Basic Care.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.  We also added the new resident case.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to be COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the State website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name                                                  County             City               Facility Bed Size          Current Active Positive Residents         Current Active Positive Staff           Facility type of positive Resident

Bethany Towers               Cass       Fargo       133                                                                     0                     0        Assisted

Bethany on 42nd              Cass       Fargo       116                           0                                        2                     Skilled

Bethany on University   Cass       Fargo       172                                                                     1                     1        Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 17, 2020 |3:00 PM

NDDoH Visitation Guidelines

The North Dakota Department of Health has provided Long Term Care facilities with reopening guidelines for visitation.  A phased-strategy approach will be utilized to gradually relax restrictions.

Bethany is currently in Phase 1 of 3.  We will need to remain in Phase 1 for 14 days.  To move into Phase 2, Cass County will need to be moved from a medium risk county to a low risk county.  When this happens, Bethany will apply for permission to move into Phase 2.

We strongly encourage all family members to get into the habit of being tested weekly or as often as offered by the ND Department of Health and Cass County Public Health.  We may require visitors to provide proof of a recent negative Covid-19 test, in order to be allowed into Bethany to visit as part of our Phase 2 strategy to keep residents safe.  We cannot risk a massive outbreak in our facilities as we introduce hundreds of people into our buildings.  Many residents who live at Bethany have underlying health conditions, so please take advantage of testing when you have the opportunity.  Testing will benefit our residents now, while we are offering outside visitation, and in the future as we plan for internal visitation.  Please see the attached news release for information on testing options.

June 11, 2020 | 7:00 am

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/11/20 10:00am:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We received remarkable results from the 1059 COVID-19 swab tests we completed on Monday, June 8th, for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There was only one new staff case.  No new resident cases.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care, assisted living and independent living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd every Monday in June.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and North Dakota Department of Health.

 

Testing will be conducted every remaining Monday in June—June 15th, 22nd and 29th.  Resident testing will start after 8:00am and be concluded around 11:30am.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive-through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or the Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables or Bethany Towers-Basic Care.  The one Towers assisted living resident who tested positive last week was moved to the skilled care area for isolation.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.   At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely caution before considering someone COVID-19 free.

 

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type of positive Resident
Bethany Towers Cass Fargo 133 1 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 1 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 1 1 Skilled

 

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 8, 2020 | 4:30 pm

Phased-In Visitation Schedule

Phased approach to resuming visitation

 

On June 5th, Gov. Doug Burgum signed an executive order that modifies restrictions on visitation at long-term care facilities in North Dakota during the COVID19 pandemic, allowing for a phased approach to resuming visitation as outlined in the state’s Vulnerable Population Protection (VP3) Plan.  The (VP3) Plan is a three-phased approach for reopening skilled care, basic care and assisted living facilities.  All phases require a minimum of 14 days spent in each phase.  A member of the VP3 task force needs to approve each facility plan to move into the next phase.  Steps in each phase may be altered or changed if any new COVID-19 cases are confirmed or additional risks arise.

 

Most Fargo/West Fargo facilities are in Phase 1 or making progress towards Phase 1, which advises the same restrictions and practices we are now following, including not allowing any visitors in our facilities, except for end-of-life situations.  Phase 1 does allow for limited group activities, but residents must practice social distancing.  Scheduled outdoor visits may occur between residents and their families while exercising social distancing.  Anyone visiting must wear clean face masks, stay six feet apart and perform proper hand hygiene.  We will communicate how we intend to schedule outdoor visits in the next few days since we just received approval to move into Phase 1.

 

In order to move into Phase 2, a facility’s county, in our case Cass, must be at a “low-risk level” according to the state’s plan.  Currently Cass County is a moderate-risk level.  Once a facility enters Phase 2, visitation within the facility may be scheduled, and non-medically necessary trips outside the building may occur with the utilization of masks among residents and staff.  Visitations will be restricted to one visitor per resident.  Both the visitor and the resident will be required to wear masks.

 

To enter Phase 3, a facility’s county must be at a “new normal level” according to the state’s plan and there must continue to be no new cases of COVID-19 in the facility.  At this phase, visitation within the facility is fully opened, communal dining and group activities may resume, and non-medically necessary trips may continue.

June 5, 2020 | 7:00 am

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/2/20 1:00pm:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We received all results from the 1005 COVID-19 swab tests that we completed on Monday, June 1st for residents and staff at both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   There was only one new staff case and two new resident cases.  One resident tested positive at Bethany Towers and one in skilled care at Bethany on University.  The skilled care positive test was a recent admission that was only with us for 2 days before the test, so most likely this case originated in the hospital.  Bethany nursing staff in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH) will continue conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care and assisted living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd every Monday in June.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and North Dakota Department of Health.

Testing will be conducted every Monday in June—June 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th.  Resident testing will start after 8:00am and be concluded around 11:30am.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive through at Bethany on 42nd.

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

At Bethany, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42ndSkilled Care, Bethany Gables or Bethany Towers-Basic Care.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.   At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone is isolation a little longer than what the website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely caution before considering someone COVID-19 free.

 

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type of positive Resident
Bethany Towers Cass Fargo 133 1 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 0 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 1 6 Skilled

 

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 2, 2020 | 1:00 pm

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/2/20 1:00pm:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

On Monday, June 1st, we conducted 1005 COVID-19 swab tests on residents and staff for both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  Bethany nursing staff, in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH), will be conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care and assisted living residents and staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd every Monday in June.  Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).  Even though CMS does not regulate assisted living and basic care, the guidelines will be followed for those care settings also.

 

Testing will be conducted every Monday in June—June 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th.  Resident testing will start after 8am and be concluded around 11:30am.  Employee testing will begin at 5:30am and conclude at 5:30pm.  Resident testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.  Employee testing will be drive through at Bethany on 42nd.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours.  Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.  The test is free of charge.  If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

 

The North Dakota Department of Health website has been updated to reflect active cases of COVID-19 for residents and staff rather than aggregate numbers they previously reported which included inactive cases and lumped resident and staff cases together.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

 

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.  At Bethany we require two negative COVID-19 tests before we consider someone to COVID-19 free.  This may mean that we keep someone in isolation a little longer than what the website would count as a positive case—meaning we are being extremely cautious before considering someone COVID-19 free.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type of positive Resident
Bethany Gables Cass Fargo 40 0 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 0 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 2 4 Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings.Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day.Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day.Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers.Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift.A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed.This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only.Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift.If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health.Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician. Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

June 1, 2020 | 5:00 pm

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 6/1/20 5:00pm:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  I want to recognize the amazing employees we have at Bethany.  They continue to work hard and provide outstanding care while dealing with the very challenging pandemic.  The North Dakota Department of Health website has been updated to reflect active cases of COVID-19 for residents and staff rather than aggregate numbers they previously reported which included inactive cases and lumped resident and staff cases together.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type of positive Resident
Bethany Gables Cass Fargo 40 0 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 0 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 2 4 Skilled

 

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 29, 2020 | 3:00 pm

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 5/29/20 3:00pm:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

 

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  I want to recognize the amazing employees we have at Bethany.  They continue to work hard and provide outstanding care while dealing with the very challenging pandemic.  We are excited to announce that the North Dakota Department of Health website has been updated to reflect active cases of COVID-19 for residents and staff rather than aggregate numbers they previously reported which included inactive cases and lumped resident and staff cases together.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  At this time, we have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

 

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/north-dakota-coronavirus-cases .  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

 

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.

Here are the latest COVIDD-19 numbers as reported on the North Dakota Department of Health website.

Facility Name County City Facility Bed Size Current Active Positive Residents Current Active Positive Staff Facility type of positive Resident
Bethany Gables Cass Fargo 40 0 0 Assisted
Bethany on 42nd Cass Fargo 116 0 4 Skilled
Bethany on University Cass Fargo 172 2 20 Skilled

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 28, 2020 | 11:00 am

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases as of 5/28/20 11:00am:

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.   I especially want to recognize the amazing employees we have at Bethany.  They continue to work hard and provide outstanding care while dealing with the very challenging pandemic.   On Friday, May 22nd, we conducted 1013 COVID-19 swab tests on residents and staff for both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   We had only four new staff cases and one new resident case.   These results were very good news.  Our updated numbers are below.  Please pay special attention to our self-reported numbers and not the numbers reported in the media.  The cases the media report appear to come from the Department of Health website and they are very misleading.  The cases reported, by NDDoH, are total cases—past and present, so this means that our numbers will never go down.  The information the Department of Health posts is not just resident cases; they also include employee cases that are both active and recovered.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  The media reports make it seem as if all cases (past and present) are still in our building, which is not factual.   We continue to have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University-Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=36

  • Staff: 21
  • Residents: 15 (5 of these residents we admitted knowingly from other facilities)

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=7

  • Staff: 7
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=10

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 8

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=14

  • Staff: 8
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

Frequently Asked Questions:

 

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

 

  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

 

  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

 

  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

 

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

 

  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 26, 2020 | 4:00 PM

Bethany Retirement Living Surveillance Testing

We are pleased to announce that Bethany nursing staff in coordination with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH) will be conducting COVID-19 surveillance swab testing on all skilled care, basic care and assisted living residents at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd.   Ongoing testing is an important step to comply with the nursing home reopening guidelines recently published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).  Even though CMS does not regulate assisted living and basic care, the guidelines will be followed for those care settings also.

 

Testing will be conducted every Monday in June—June 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th.  Testing will start after 8am and be concluded around 11:30am each Monday in June. Testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany staff will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls. The test is free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns about the test, please contact the social worker or unit manager in Skilled Care or Nurse in Assisted Living/Basic Care.

 

Residents, family members and others are urged to monitor the Bethany Retirement Living website (www.bethanynd.org) for the most up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and Bethany.

May 26, 2020 | 2:00 PM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.   I especially want to recognize the amazing employees we have at Bethany.  They continue to work hard and provide outstanding care while dealing with the very challenging pandemic.   On Friday, May 22nd, we conducted 1013 COVID-19 swab tests on residents and staff for both Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.   We had only four new staff cases and one new resident case.   Our updated numbers are below.  Please pay special attention to our self-reported numbers and not the numbers reported in the media.  The cases the media report appear to come from the Department of Health website and they are very misleading.  The cases reported, by NDDoH, are total cases—past and present, so this means that our numbers will never go down.  The information the Department of Health posts is not just resident cases; they also include employee cases that are both active and recovered.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  The media reports make it seem as if all cases (past and present) are still in our building, which is not factual.   We continue to have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University-Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=38

  • Staff: 21
  • Residents: 17 (5 of these residents we admitted knowingly from other facilities)

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=7

  • Staff: 7
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=8

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 6

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=14

  • Staff: 8
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

FAQs

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.
  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 21, 2020 | 11:00 AM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.   Please pay close attention to our self-reported numbers and not the numbers reported in the media.  The cases the media report appear to come from the Department of Health website and they are very misleading.  The cases they report are total cases—past and present, so this means that our numbers will never go down.  The information the Department of Health posts is not just resident cases; they also include employee cases that are both active and recovered.  At Bethany, if an employee tests positive, they are immediately removed from the schedule and told to quarantine at home until they have two negative test results.  The media reports make it seems as if all cases (past and present) are still in our building which is not factual.   We continue to have no active resident cases at Bethany on 42nd Skilled Care, Bethany Gables, Bethany Towers-Basic Care and Assisted Living.  Our active resident cases at Bethany on University-Skilled Care are all on one isolated, self-contained unit.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions below.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=35

  • Staff: 19
  • Residents: 16 (5 of these residents we admitted knowingly from other facilities)

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=6

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=7

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 5

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=13

  • Staff: 7
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

FAQs

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.
  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 20, 2020 | 11:00 AM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  Please refer to the frequently asked questions further down on this posting.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health
  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=34

  • Staff: 19
  • Residents: 15 (5 of these residents we admitted from other facilities)

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=7

  • Staff: 7
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=7

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 5

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=12

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

FAQs

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • We are following recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the North Dakota Department of Health.
  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.
  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 18, 2020 | 10:30 AM

Bethany Retirement Living Surveillance Testing

We are pleased to announce that the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) will be conducting COVID-19 surveillance testing on all skilled care, basic care and assisted living residents and on all staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd  on Friday, 5/22. This testing is part of the NDDoH push to do more testing in long term care communities on a regular basis.

Resident testing will be conducted in the morning of Friday, 5/22, and be concluded around lunch time. Testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany Retirement Living will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.

Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd employees will be tested between 5:30am and 6:30pm on Friday, 5/22, while employees are in their vehicles. Testing for employees will take place at Bethany on 42nd due to traffic flow concerns at Bethany on University. Those employees who fail to complete testing will be removed from the schedule.

Residents, family members, employees and others are urged to monitor the Bethany Retirement Living website (www.bethanynd.org) for the most up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and Bethany.

 

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug

President/CEO

May 15, 2020 | 11:00 AM

Bethany Retirement Living FAQs and COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  We conducted 389 COVID-19 tests on all basic care, assisted living and skilled care residents at Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University on Friday, May 8th.   We are very happy to report that all residents at Bethany on 42nd, which includes Bethany Gables, are now COVID-19 free.   At Bethany on University, we remain COVID-19 free in our basic care and assisted living buildings, but we added 11 new cases on 2nd floor of our memory care unit in our skilled care operations.  All residents that tested negative were moved off of that unit and put into isolation in another care area of our skilled care building. On Wednesday, May 13th, we conducted 613 COVID-19 tests on all employees of Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University.  Testing went well and we’ve updated our results below.   We also admitted 5 COVID-19 positive residents from other facilities this week to help them manage their cases, and more importantly, to provide quality care to these vulnerable people that are dealing with this relentless virus.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

 

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=37

  • Staff: 19
  • Residents: 18 (5 of these residents we admitted from other facilities)

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=7

  • Staff: 7
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=4

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 2

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=12

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug, CEO

FAQs

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

  • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
  • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.
  • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.
  • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
  • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.
  • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
  • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
  • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
  • Bethany may admit COVID positive residents periodically if we have a COVID-positive area set up.
  • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 stats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
  • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
  • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
  • No group activities are scheduled.
  • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
  • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
  • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
  • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
  • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
  • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

Telemedicine is encouraged.

  • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
  • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

  • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.
  • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
  • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
  • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
  • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
  • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
  • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
  • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
  • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
  • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
  • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
  • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
  • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
  • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
  • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
  • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
  • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
  • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
  • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
  • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions.

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 12, 2020 | 2:00 PM

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  We conducted 389 COVID-19 tests on all basic care, assisted living and skilled care residents at Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University on Friday, May 8th.   We are very happy to report that all residents at Bethany on 42nd, which includes Bethany Gables, are now COVID-19 free.   At Bethany on University, we remain COVID-19 free in our basic care and assisted living buildings, but we added 11 new cases on 2nd floor of our memory care unit in our skilled care operations.  All residents that tested negative were moved off of that unit and put into isolation in another care area of our skilled care building.  Overall, testing went well and we’ve updated our results below.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=17

  • Staff: 3
  • Residents: 14

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=3

  • Staff: 3
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=2

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 1

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=12

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

May 11, 2020 | 2:00 PM

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  We conducted 389 COVID-19 tests on all basic care, assisted living and skilled care residents at Bethany on 42nd and Bethany on University on Friday, May 8th.   Unfortunately, we do not have all of the results back yet, but we will update our website when all the results are in.  Overall, testing went well and we’ve updated our results below.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=17

  • Staff: 3
  • Residents: 14

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=4

  • Staff: 4
  • Residents: 0

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=2

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 1

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=11

  • Staff: 5
  • Residents: 6–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care

May 8, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=5

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 3

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=5

  • Staff: 4
  • Residents: 1

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=2

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 1

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=10

  • Staff: 5
  • Residents: 5–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

May 7, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=4

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 2

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=8

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=2

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 1

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=7

  • Staff: 3
  • Residents: 4–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

May 7, 2020

Frequently Asked Questions

What have you done to decrease the risk of COVID-19 for residents and educate family members?

    • Among the first acts undertaken to limit potential exposure was to restrict visitors and lock the entrances to Bethany buildings. Only limited access to family members is granted on a case-by-case basis for compassionate reasons such as end of life.
    • All visitors are screened as they enter the buildings.

     

    • The Bethany website has been enhanced by adding a “Coronavirus Information” tab to share up-to-date information about the pandemic in general and at Bethany Retirement Living.

     

    • Numerous emails have been sent to families from our Social Services team.
    • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages have been distributed by the CEO for education to family member primary contact.
    • Letters have been mailed to primary Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) resident contacts, SNF residents without dementia/memory issues, and residents of Towers, Gables and Grace Pointe.

     

    • All potential admissions are screened for symptoms and fever.
    • All SNF admissions are initially processed through one unit (TCU) with increased monitoring of potential symptoms.
    • A negative COVID test is required for all new admissions or for hospital returns.
    • Screening of all SNF residents occurs two times/day and, at times, three times/day. Symptoms monitored include a full set of vital signs along with the observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
    • Screening of all Assisted Living and Basic Care residents occurs daily and, at times, two times/day. Symptoms to monitor include temperature, pulse and O2 sats along with observation of any of the following: coughing, shortness of breath, weakness, fatigue, sore throat, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, muscle aches and loss of taste/smell.
    • Resident Activities of Daily Living (ADL) sheets are updated to include prompts for hand sanitizing of resident hands and resident mask placement.
    • All non-emergent resident appointments are being decreased or canceled.
    • No group activities are scheduled.
    • Residents are required to stay in their own rooms.
    • No therapy is being conducted in the therapy/wellness centers. Individual therapy sessions are being done in the resident rooms.
    • No communal dining for SNF residents unless the resident eating in their room is a safety risk.
    • No communal dining for Towers or Gables assisted living residents.
    • Use of masks is encouraged for all residents.
    • Use of hand sanitizer is encouraged for each resident interaction.

    Telemedicine is encouraged.

    • Each Bethany campus has a designated Infection Preventionist to provide surveillance and oversight.
    • Visual alerts such as signage and posters have been added throughout the facility to encourage hand sanitizing for both residents and staff.

What have you done to educate staff and decrease the risk of COVID-19?

    • See above question above as some information applies to both questions.

     

    • Everbridge (Mass Communication System) messages to staff related to education.
    • Several YouTube Videos (10 total) that have been produced and sent to ALL staff cell phones.
    • Educational videos and verbal education are reviewed at shift change/daily huddles etc.
    • Mandatory Healthcare Academy Education on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Hand Hygiene, COVID-19 and infection prevention have been assigned and made mandatory for all employees.
    • Surveillance and auditing of employees is being conducted to ensure proper use of PPE and handwashing is occurring.
    • Hand sanitizer is required for all nursing staff to have on the person (this is not new, but an uncommon practice for most SNFs).
    • Facemasks are required for staff when in resident areas.
    • Facemask and face shield requirements have been enhanced as guidance has evolved.
    • Employees are monitored for Covid-19 symptoms at the start of each shift, as well as with staff that call in ill prior to their shift. A detailed spreadsheet enables close tracking of all employees with symptoms and tracks adherence to the Return-to-Work guidance from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).
    • A daily phone call is placed to all employees that have been taken off the schedule due to Covid-19 symptoms.
    • ALL employees are requested to limit employment to “Bethany Only” or be removed from schedules until the COVID-19 crisis has passed. This was a difficult decision for both Bethany and our staff, but the risk of infection when working many different jobs and coming in contact with many different people works against the concept of social distancing to limit the spread.
    • A COVID-19 Leadership team meets three times weekly to discuss PPE supply and to analyze additional vendors for increased PPE supply, new guidance on COVID-19, etc.
    • Meetings are held five days a week to discuss employees who are furloughed and their plans for return to work.
    • Leadership team members are on-call 24 hours per day/7 days a week to deal with employee and family questions and concerns.
    • Weekly meetings and/or conference calls/webinars/education reviews are held with the NDDoH, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health, ND Long Term Care Association, and American Health Care Association.
    • Contact tracing if/when applicable is coordinated with the ND Department of Health.
    • Excess chairs have been removed in our break room areas to limit tables to two staff members at a table only. Additional space has been opened up for employee breaks to allow for social distancing.
    • Visual alerts such as signs and posters have been added throughout all buildings that encourage staff hand hygiene, resident hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
    • Increased hand hygiene stations have been installed throughout all buildings.

We have received notification that a resident at Bethany has tested positive for COVID-19 and we have the following questions:

Will all residents now be tested?

  • Resident testing (mass surveillance testing of all residents) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health. A resident that is symptomatic is tested at the direction of the resident’s physician.

Will all staff be tested?

  • Bethany employees complete a health screening at the start of their shift. If an employee triggers a concern on the health screening, they are immediately removed from the schedule.   A Bethany staff member then works with the employee on symptom monitoring, communication with their physician and return to work protocol.
  • Staff testing (mass surveillance testing of all staff) is coordinated and directed by the ND Department of Health.

Will COVID-19 positive residents be taken to the hospital?

  • A transfer to the hospital is coordinated by the resident’s physician, Bethany staff and the ND Department of Health. Residents who have in a decline in health status may be transferred to the hospital as directed by their physician.  Bethany would call 911 in an emergency situation.

May 7, 2020

Update on COVID-19 Testing

We are pleased to announce that the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) will be conducting COVID-19 surveillance testing on all skilled care, basic care and assisted living residents and all staff at Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd. This testing is part of the NDDoH push to do more testing in communities. This is great news since many other states are still struggling to obtain adequate testing supplies.

Resident testing will be conducted on Friday, 5/8, and be concluded around lunch time. Testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living/Basic Care nursing teams.

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 48-72 hours. Bethany Retirement Living will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.

Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd employees will be tested between 5:00am and 7:30pm on Wednesday (5/13) while employees are in their vehicle. Testing for employees will take place at Bethany on 42nd due to traffic flow concerns at Bethany on University. Those employees who fail to complete testing will be removed from the schedule.

Residents, family members and others are urged to monitor the Bethany Retirement Living website (www.bethanynd.org) for the most up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and Bethany.

Sincerely,

Shawn Stuhaug
President/CEO

May 6, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=4

  • Staff: 2
  • Residents: 2

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=8

  • Staff: 6
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=1

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=7

  • Staff: 3
  • Residents: 4–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

May 5, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=3

  • Staff: Two staff members have tested positive for COVID-19.  Both employees have been removed from the schedule.
  • Residents: 1

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=10

  • Staff: 8 employees have tested positive for COVID-19.  One staff member was tested at another healthcare facility due to exposure at that facility.  7 were tested as part of surveillance testing with 6 being asymptomatic and one staff person symptomatic that was already removed from our schedule as part of our pre-shift screening.
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=1

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=5

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 4–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

May 4, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We appreciate your ongoing support and prayers for our residents and staff during this challenging time.  Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be identifying employees, residents or patients who test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees who are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governor’s office is reporting, but due to timing situations and employees working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=2

  • Staff: Two staff members have tested positive for COVID-19.  Both employees have been removed from the schedule.
  • Residents: No active cases

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=10

  • Staff: 8 employees have tested positive for COVID-19.  One staff member was tested at another healthcare facility due to exposure at that facility.  7 were tested as part of surveillance testing with 6 being asymptomatic and one staff person symptomatic that was already removed from our schedule as part of our pre-shift screening.
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=1

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=5

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 4–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

April 29, 2020

ND Today Interview

April 28, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We want to first thank you for your continued support and prayers for our residents and staff during this time of COVID-19.  As you may know, we conducted 490 COVID-19 tests on our residents and staff on Wednesday, April 22nd.  The testing went well and we’ve updated our results below.  We have the majority of our test results back from the State Lab and we’ll update the website when the remaining tests have been received.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be giving employee, resident or patient names that test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees that are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governors’ office is reporting, but due to timing situations and staff working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=1

  • Staff: One staff member has tested positive for COVID-19.  This person has been off the schedule already due to our pre-shift screening.
  • Residents: No active cases

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=10

  • Staff: 8 employees have tested positive for COVID-19.  One staff member was tested at another healthcare facility due to exposure at that facility.  7 were tested as part of surveillance testing with 6 being asymptomatic and one staff person symptomatic that was already removed from our schedule as part of our pre-shift screening.
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=1

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=5

  • Staff: 1
  • Residents: 4–one of these is double counted for both Assisted Living and Skilled Care.

April 24, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We want to first thank you for your continued support and prayers for our residents and staff during this time of COVID-19.  As you may know, we conducted 490 COVID-19 tests on our residents and staff on Wednesday, April 22nd.  The testing went well and we’ve updated our results below.  We have the majority of our test results back from the State Lab and we’ll update the website when the remaining tests have been received.

Bethany will continue to provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience (https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus).  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be giving employee, resident or patient names that test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees that are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governors’ office is reporting, but due to timing situations and staff working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=1

  • Staff: One staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 .  This person has been off the schedule due to exposure at another healthcare facility.
  • Residents: No active cases

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=10

  • Staff: 8 employees have tested positive for COVID-19.  One staff member was tested at another healthcare facility due to exposure at that facility.  7 were tested as part of surveillance testing with 6 being asymptomatic and one staff person symptomatic that was already removed from our schedule as part of our pre-shift screening process.
  • Residents: 2

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients COVID-19 Cases: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee COVID-19 Cases: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=0

  • Staff: 0
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=3

  • Staff:  1
  • Residents: 2

April 21, 2020

COVID-19 Testing

We are pleased to announce that the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH) will be conducting COVID-19 surveillance oropharyngeal testing on all skilled care and assisted living residents at Bethany on 42nd and on all employees who work at Bethany on 42nd.  This testing is part of their push to do more testing in communities.  This is great news since accessing testing supplies has been a challenge in most other states.

 

Testing will begin at 5:30am tomorrow (Wednesday, 4/22) and conclude by 6:00pm.  Testing of Skilled Nursing residents will be completed in the morning and Assisted Living residents in the afternoon.  Testing will take place in the residents’ rooms and will be coordinated by the Skilled Care and Assisted Living nursing teams.

 

It is anticipated test results will be returned within 24 to 48 hours.  Bethany Retirement Living will attempt to contact all residents, regardless of the results, but will prioritize positive test calls.

 

Bethany on 42nd employees will be tested between 5:30am and 6:00pm on Wednesday while employees are in their vehicle.  Those employees who fail to complete testing will be removed from the schedule.

 

Residents, family members and others are urged to monitor the Bethany Retirement Living website (www.bethanynd.org) for the most up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and Bethany.

 

Shawn Stuhaug

President/CEO

April 20, 2020

Bethany Retirement Living COVID-19 Active Cases

Dear families and friends of Bethany Retirement Living:

We want to first thank you for your support and prayers for our residents and staff during this time of COVID-19.  We understand the challenges of not being able to see the people you care about and the worry that comes from the unknown of this virus since the world is still learning how to deal with it.

Bethany will provide updates via e-mail and our website as our COVID-19 cases change.  You are also able to call us with any questions.  We are providing this link to the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) COVID19 website for your convenience: https://health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus  As we update our information, here are a few guidelines we will be following.

  • We will not be giving employee, resident or patient names that test positive due to confidentiality.
  • All employees that are ill are not allowed to work for 14 days and will need two negative COVID-19 tests prior to return to work.
  • We will not give information on resident deaths due to confidentiality.
  • We will do our best to ensure our numbers tie to what the Governors’ office is reporting, but due to timing situations and staff working at other facilities, the numbers may not always reconcile.

Current active cases are as follows:

Bethany on University:  Total Cases=1

  • Staff: One staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 .  This person has been off the schedule due to exposure at another healthcare facility.
  • Residents: No active cases

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Cases=2

  • Staff: Two staff have tested positive for COVID-19.  One staff member was tested at another healthcare facility due to exposure at that facility, and the last was tested as part of surveillance testing and was asymptomatic.
  • Residents: one active case.

Current inactive cases are as follows:

  • Residents/Patients COVID-19 Cases: If a case is not active it means the resident may have discharged, recovered or passed away.
  • Employee COVID-19 Cases: If a case is not active it means the staff member recovered or is no longer employed.

Bethany on University:  Total Inactive Cases=0

  • Staff: 0
  • Residents: 0

Bethany on 42nd:  Total Inactive Cases=3

  • Staff:    This staff person was exposed at a church gathering
  • Residents: 2 inactive cases

April 20, 2020

Health Care Workers (HCW) Return to Work Guidance

HCW Diagnosed with Covid-19 (positive test result)

The North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) is adhering to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s test-based strategy for HCW release from isolation.

The HCW may return to work when the following criteria have been met:

  • Resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath), and
  • Negative results for COVID-19 from at least two consecutive specimens collected ≥24 hours apart (total of two negative specimens)

The two specimens for COVID-19 testing should not be collected without the first two criteria being met. Remember the two specimens must also be collected at least 24 hours apart.

If subsequent testing of a health care worker is positive, then the health care worker should remain in isolation and not go back to work. A specimen should be collected from the health care worker 72 hours after the previous positive test result.

HCW With Symptoms but Never Tested for COIVD-19

The HCW may return to work when the following criteria have been met:

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath) and
  • At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

If a HCW has an alternative diagnosis (e.g., influenza, strep throat), criteria for return to work should be based on that diagnosis. HCW should refer to their facility’s policy for returning to work for the specific diagnosis.

HCW With Symptoms and a Negative COVID-19 Test Result

The HCW may return to work when the following criteria have been met:

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath)

If the HCW is someone currently being monitored and under a 14-day quarantine because they are a household or close contact to a confirmed case, then they need to remain quarantined for the entire 14-day period, regardless of the negative test result. They still could be incubating the virus so one negative earlier on in their quarantine does not absolve them from getting sick and testing positive later in their quarantine.

HCW is a Household or Close Contact to a COVID-19 Case Outside of a Healthcare Setting

The HCW may return to work when the following criteria have been met:

  • Is asymptomatic (does not have any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 infection) and
  • It has been 14 days from their last known exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case.

Household contacts to a COVID-19 case have ongoing exposure while they remain in the household. The 14-day quarantine period begins once the COVID-19 case is determined to be non-infectious.

April 17, 2020

Senior Heroes by RingMastered

April 15, 2020

News Release

Bethany Confirms Coronavirus

“We have one confirmed case of Covid-19 at Bethany on 42nd at this time. The confirmed case is in the skilled care area of Bethany on 42nd.  We do not have any confirmed cases at Bethany on University.  We are working hard and doing everything we can to prevent the spread of this virus at Bethany on 42nd.  We are in close communication with North Dakota Department of Health officials to ensure we are taking the appropriate steps,” says Shawn Stuhaug, President and CEO of Bethany Retirement Living.

 

“Resident health and safety are top priorities at Bethany.  Due to patient privacy laws, we are unable to share any further specific information about the confirmed case, but we have notified the residents’ immediate family members.  We will continue to keep family members up-to-date through personal phone calls, e-mail, Bethany’s Facebook page and Bethany’s website, so they have the latest information about their loved ones.

“We remain in contact with the North Dakota Department of Health to stay up-to-date on the latest information to prevent and manage the spread of Coronavirus.  We have activated our COVID-19 emergency response plan.

“We continue to reinforce to our staff that anyone who is sick should stay home.  We also continue to screen all individuals – including employees – as they enter the building.”

Since early March, all Bethany facilities were closed to visitors as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and North Dakota Department of Health.  Family members can continue to interact with their loved ones by using video chat, calling, texting or checking in on social media.

Bethany Retirement Living was founded in Fargo in 1939 and is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).  Bethany operates two campuses in Fargo and provides high-quality care to the elderly in skilled nursing, memory care, rehabilitation, transitional care, assisted living, basic care, senior apartments, personal care programs, and home care.

 

For more information about COVID-19 specifically, please visit the CDC’s coronavirus disease information page.

Sincerely,
Shawn Stuhaug
President & CEO
Bethany Retirement Living

 

For additional information, contact:
Grant R. Richardson, Senior Executive – Development & Community Relations
701.478.8910
grichardson@bethanynd.org

April 7, 2020

InForum: Fargo, West Fargo mayors to issue ‘stay home’ directives

Read InForum article

April 2, 2020

Surgeon General Social Distancing

March 20, 2020

Stories of Care

During this time it’s even more important to have a reason to smile! ?

Checkout some great stories sure to put a smile on your face at the link below!

#CareNotCOVID #BrighterAtBethany

Care Not Covid

March 18, 2020

Letter from Bethany Retirement Living’s President/CEO

To Our Residents and Family Members:

We know you are concerned about the spread of COVID-19 {the new coronavirus) and how it may impact us at Bethany Retirement Living. Making sure residents are cared for in a safe and healthy environment is our top priority.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the ND Department of Health have directed that we restrict all visitors and volunteers from visiting the facility. This includes family and friends. This restriction is in effect until further notice. We are posting signs in entryways to notify visitors and actively screening individuals, including staff, who do need to enter the building.

We may only allow visitors for compassionate care reasons, such as end-of-life situations. This will be handled on a case-by-case basis. We will actively screen anyone who must visit in these situations. Protective measures will be followed during these visits. If visitors have respiratory symptoms such as a fever, they will be restricted from entering the building.

We understand connecting with your loved one is incredibly important. There are a variety of other ways to communicate including telephone, email, text, video chat or social media. We are happy to facilitate these methods of communication. Please visit our website and click on the “contact us” button or call us at 701-239-3000 to arrange alternative contact methods.

We will stay up-to-date on State and Federal government recommendations as they may continue to change. Bethany Retirement Living is in close contact with the state health department and are following their guidance.
Should you have any questions, please contact us at 701-239-3000 or e-mail us at info@bethanynd.org. Please also follow us on Facebook and visit our website for updates. Our website address is
www.bethanynd.org.

For more information about COVID-19 specifically, please visit the CDC’s coronavirus disease information page.

Sincerely,
Shawn Stuhaug
President & CEO
Bethany Retirement Living

March 16, 2020

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

CMS Announces New Measures to Protect Nursing Home Residents from COVID-19

As part of the broader Trump Administration announcement today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced critical new measures designed to keep America’s nursing home residents safe from the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The measures take the form of a memorandum and is based on the newest recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It directs nursing homes to significantly restrict visitors and nonessential personnel, as well as restrict communal activities inside nursing homes. The new measures are CMS’s latest action to protect America’s seniors, who are at highest risk for complications from COVID-19. While visitor restrictions may be difficult for residents and families, it is an important temporary measure for their protection.

“As we learn more about the Coronavirus from experts on the ground, we’ve learned that seniors with multiple conditions are at highest risk for infection and complications, so CMS is using every tool at our disposal to keep nursing homes free from infection,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “Temporarily restricting visitors and nonessential workers will help reduce the risk of Coronavirus spread in nursing homes, keeping residents safe. The Trump Administration is working around the clock to ensure the continued safety of America’s health care system, particularly nursing homes.”

The new measures CMS announced today, which supersede prior CMS guidance, constitute the agency’s most aggressive and decisive recommendations with respect to nursing home safety in the face of the spread of COVID-19. They include:

+ Restricting all visitors, effective immediately, with exceptions for compassionate care, such as end-of-life situations;
+ Restricting all volunteers and nonessential health care personnel and other personnel (i.e. barbers);
+ Cancelling all group activities and communal dining; and
+ Implementing active screening of residents and health care personnel for fever and respiratory symptoms.

The guidance directs nursing homes to restrict visitation except in certain compassionate cases, like end-of-life. In those cases, visitors will be equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks, and the visit will be limited to a specific room only.

CMS’s guidance is based upon CDC recommendations informed by real-time information being gathered from experts on the ground in areas with large numbers of COVID-19 cases, like Washington and California. According to CDC, seniors with multiple health conditions are at highest risk for complications. With large congregations of that particularly vulnerable population, nursing homes are extremely susceptible to quick spread of the virus. There have already been reports of large numbers of cases of COVID-19 spreading quickly through nursing homes, such as the Life Care Center in Kirkland, Washington. The spread of COVID-19 in a nursing home can amplify or seed further spread to other facilities when patients are transferred and when staff and visitors come and go. According to CDC, visitors and health care personnel who are ill are the most likely source of introduction of COVID-19 into nursing homes, necessitating today’s change in guidance to restrict visitors and personnel.

CMS understands the vital importance of keeping nursing home residents connected with their loved ones. However, the rapid spread of COVID-19 and its transmission through visitors and health care workers – as well as nursing home residents’ high risk – has made it necessary to restrict nonessential visitation in order to protect the health and safety of residents. In lieu of visits, CMS encourages nursing homes to facilitate increased virtual communication between residents and families. CMS also encourages nursing homes to keep residents’ loved ones informed about their care. This could include assigning a staff member as a primary contact for families to facilitate inbound communications, as well as regular outbound communications. Nursing homes are expected to notify potential visitors to defer visitation until further notice through signage and other outreach, such as emails and phone calls.

CDC has made several additional recommendations for nursing homes as they work to keep their residents safe. Nursing homes should put alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60-95 percent alcohol in every resident room – both inside and outside the room if possible – and in every common area. Additionally, nursing homes should ensure sinks are well-stocked with soap and paper towels for hand washing. They should make tissues and facemasks available for people who are coughing, and make necessary PPE available in areas where resident care is provided. Finally, they should ensure hospital grade disinfectants are available to allow for frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces and shared resident equipment. A full list of CDC guidance to nursing homes can be found here.

This guidance, and earlier CMS actions in response to the COVID-19 virus, are part of the ongoing White House Task Force efforts. To keep up with the important work the Task Force is doing in response to COVID-19 click here www.coronavirus.gov. For information specific to CMS, please visit the Current Emergencies Website.

Mar 13, 2020

Video from ACHA/NACL Director, Dr. David Gifford

March 12, 2020

Covid-19 / Respiratory Disease Prevention Update

At Bethany Retirement Living, our absolute first priority is the health and well­being of our patients and residents and of our employees. By extension, this also impacts family members, vendors, clergy and other potential visitors.

We are wrestling with a threat – both real and potential – that could affect those listed above. We have seen some cases of Influenza A at Bethany and, thankfully, that appears to have run its course and is on the decline. We have NO CASES of Covid -19 (coronavirus) at Bethany and are taking steps to limit the potential exposure to any such virus.

To that end, we are asking non-essential visitors, including family members, contractors, and volunteers to suspend visits to Bethany on University and Bethany on 42nd for the next few weeks. If you feel you MUST visit, you will be asked to complete a health questionnaire and facility staff will take your temperature.

Family members can communicate with residents by using video chat, calling, texting, social media or through the contact feature on our website. Our Community Life staff can help coordinate alternative ways to communicate with your loved one.

Please do not visit at this time if you are currently feeling unwell or are experiencing respiratory symptoms (coughing, sneezing, a fever or shortness of breath) OR if you recently traveled to a geographical area considered high-risk for Coronavirus (Covid-19) by the CDC, OR within the past 14 days you have taken a trip on a cruise ship or participated in other settings where crowds were contained to a common location. Please call ahead as entry protocols may have changed since you last visited. Please visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html for an updated list of restricted countries.

All visitors will be screened when they enter Bethany facilities, including completion of a health-related survey and submitting to a temperature check.

We have also enhanced our already diligent efforts to reduce potential exposure at our facilities by cleaning and sanitizing contact areas such as doorknobs, hand rails, elevator buttons, etc., cancelling activities, limiting resident movement within our buildings, and restricting visitors.

We are working with local, regional and national health officials to assess and react to an ever-changing situation. We plan to implement any prudent and appropriate measures to keep our residents, patients and employees safe.

Thank you for your understanding and supporting our efforts to protect those who call Bethany “home.” It is our intent to remain transparent and will provide updates as new information becomes available.

We understand you may have questions regarding the evolving coronavirus (Covid-19) and the prevention and preparedness steps we are taking. The following may answer some of your questions.

What is Bethany Retirement Living doing to prepare for any incidence of Covid-19 (coronavirus)?

To address Covid-19:

  • Bethany Retirement Living maintains standard protocols and procedures to prevent or limit the spread of infections disease in our senior living community. We are actively following our established protocols for infection control and have implemented additional training modules to familiarize employees with identification, reporting and treatment of Covid-19.
  • An internal interdisciplinary team is monitoring and reviewing information from the CDC and state health departments. This team will evaluate risks and determine appropriate actions, as needed.
  • We have heightened our cleaning and disinfecting protocols for frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Employees, residents, visitors and others are encouraged to regularly wash their hands with soap. Dispensers of hand sanitizer have been posted at all entrances and throughout our facilities, and individuals are urged to use the product routinely.
  • We are sharing reliable and verified updates on Covid-19 with our residents, family members, employees and the public through our website, social media, email, the State of North Dakota Mass Communication system and/or other forms of communication.

Is it safe to visit my family member at Bethany Retirement Living?

For the safety of our residents and following the guidance of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS}, we have implemented a restricted visitor policy, requesting that only necessary visitors enter Bethany buildings. If there are special circumstances such as end-of­life, please contact Bethany for more information. As a healthcare provider, we consider community health – especially those living at Bethany- a priority and will follow the guidance of the CDC,CMS and local departments of health.

Can I still volunteer?

We are limiting external volunteers except in special circumstances such as for hospice or spiritual care.

Are vendors allowed in Bethany?

We will be coordinating with vendors to minimize their travel within our buildings.

Will I be notified if there is an outbreak at Bethany Retirement Living?

At this time, NO resident or patient at either Bethany campus has been diagnosed with Covid-19 (coronavirus). In the event of a localized outbreak, we will notify residents, staff, volunteers and family members.

Do you have enough supplies and staff to care for residents in the event of an outbreak?

Supplies will be available and distributed if /when the need arises. We are working with our suppliers to ensure adequate supplies of needed items. Please note that there is no medication (antibiotic or antiviral) that is effective against Covid-19.

What can I do to help?

The public can help in a variety of ways:

  • DO NOT VISIT Bethany Retirement Living unless absolutely necessary
  • Stay healthy and prevent spreading germs by following recommended actions: frequent handwashing; avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands; cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing and dispose of all used tissues; avoid contact with people who are ill
  • Stay in touch with your loved one by phone, text, email and other means that do not require close proximity
  • Be in prayer with us for those impacted by the disease; for the wellbeing of residents and staff; for those working diligently to provide means of prevention, treatment and cure; and for calm, wisdom and mutual respect to prevail on our greater communities.