Preparing for Coronavirus (COVID-19)

NURSING HOME VISITATION UPDATE 03/17/2021:
Effective March 22, 2021

We are excited to announce that in-person visits resume on Monday, March 22, 2021. 

All residents and staff have tested negative for the past two weeks. We continue to vaccinate new residents and all staff that desire a vaccination. We will be offering the same visiting days that we currently have for window visits (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday). Visits will increase from 20 minutes to 45 minutes. We have specific guidance from both federal and state regulatory agencies with a few areas highlighted:

  • Social distancing and masks are still required
  • No visitors will be allowed on the unit
  • Movement in the facility is limited.  Visitors should go directly to the designated visitation area, no walking around different halls of the facility
  • Visitors are required to pass the screening to enter for a visit (temperature, travel questions, exposure questions, and provide address and phone for tracing in the event it is needed)

If the County positivity rate goes above 5%, you will require a negative Covid test to have visits. To check the positivity rate visit:  https://forward.ny.gov/percentage-positive-results-county-dashboard  

Please follow all provided guidance.  Do not come to the facility, if you do not feel well. 

All family members are welcome, two visitors at a time, including the younger members as long as they are accompanied by an adult 18 or older.

To schedule your visit, please call (585) 786-8940, Ext. 7900, weekdays.  Staff are not assigned to answer calls and make appointments on the weekends, so please leave a message and a member of our team will return your call during the week.  Thank you for your ongoing support and cooperation please be patient as we re-implement this process.

SKILLED NURSING FACILITY VISITATION UPDATE 03/02/2021:
Effective March 3, 2021
 
Wyoming County Skilled Nursing Facility will begin window visits on Wednesday, March 3, 2021.
 
The following are the available times for visits:
Monday and Wednesday from 10am – 11:30am and 2pm – 4pm
Saturday from 2pm -3pm
Sunday from 10am -11:30am and 2pm -3pm
 
Visits will be 20 minutes long to allow the staff to clean prior to the next visit.
 
Please call (585) 786-8940 Ext. 7900 to make an appointment.
If nobody answers, leave a message and someone will return your call.

HOSPITAL PATIENT VISITATION UPDATE 02/26/2021:

Effective March 1, 2021

As WCCHS continues to monitor the activity of the Covid-19 pandemic within our community and surrounding communities, we are pleased to announce that we will resume limited visitation for the inpatient areas.  Monitoring will be ongoing, as the health and safety of our patients, visitors, and employees remains a priority.

We understand the importance of patient interaction with their loved ones and the role visitation plays in a patients’ emotional wellbeing and therefore in their recovery.  We encourage families to continue to consider communication through phone and video chat during other hours of the day.  The Patient and Family Services department can help set up the video call.  If an in-person visit is desired, the following precautions remain in place to protect our community, patients, families, staff, and visitors, against the potential risk for acquiring and/or the spread of infectious disease.

The visitor must:

  • Be limited to one adult (18 years of age or older) person per visit, except as determined by the hospital staff.
  • Undergo temperature and symptom screening upon arrival. If a visitor does not pass the screening process or does not follow hospital protocols, they will not be allowed to visit.  Behavioral Health visitors will be screened upon arrival at the Behavioral Health entrance on the backside of the facility, Door “M.”
  • Perform hand hygiene (with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or the use of soap and water).
  • Wear a mask at all times, including while in the patient room. Visitors who fail to wear a mask will be asked to leave the facility.
  • Practice social distancing and remain at the bedside throughout the visit unless directed by hospital staff, except to use the restroom.

Visiting hours may vary by unit and will be at the discretion of the healthcare providers.  Holiday visiting hours will follow weekend hours.

  • General inpatient units (Med/Surg 3rdFloor and ICU) and Behavioral Health: limited to 1 visitor between 2:30pm and 6:30pm, Monday-Friday.  Saturday and Sunday visitation will be from 12pm- 4pm. Visitation times may be altered under special circumstances, such as for patients in imminent end-of-life situations and patients for whom a support person has been determined essential to the care of the patient.
  • Emergency Department:  limited to 1 visitor, starting at patient arrival.  If your loved one is admitted to the hospital between 2:30pm and 6:30pm, Monday- Friday and 12pm-4pm on Saturday and Sunday, you may accompany them to their room.  Otherwise, you must return during visiting hours.  Pediatric patients may have both parents as essential support persons.
  • Labor and Delivery:  limited to 1 designated support person and if applicable, a doula.  The support person must have a temperature check every 12 hours.
  • Same-Day Surgery and Procedures:  limited to 1 visitor only when the patient needs assistance.  Scheduling of patients must be done to limit time in waiting rooms due to space constraints and social distancing requirements.
  • Outpatient Clinics and Services:  No visitors allowed at this time unless the patient needs wheelchair or communication assistance.  Scheduling of patients must be done to limit time in waiting rooms due to space constraints and social distancing requirements.

We understand that this is a particularly stressful time.  Please know that we remain wholly dedicated to supporting you and your family during this challenging time.  If you have any questions about these changes, please contact (585) 786-2233.  Thank you for observing these important measures to promote a safe and healing environment for all.

HOSPITAL PATIENT VISITATION UPDATE 11/27/2020:

Effective:  November 28, 2020

NO VISITATION UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE:  As WCCHS continues to monitor the activity of the Covid-19 pandemic within our community and surrounding communities, the health and safety of our patients, visitors, and employees remains a priority.  To maintain safety, WCCHS feels it is in everyone’s best interest to stop all visitation until further notice.  We continue to encourage families to consider communication through phone and video chat.  The Patient and Family Services department can assist with this.

As per NYSDOH Visitation Guidance, the following visitations are allowed:

Labor and Delivery– one support person and a doula (if the patient has one).

Pediatric Patients– one support person.

Imminent End-of Life– one support person.

Medically Necessary Situations– one support person.

Surgery– WCCHS remains open for elective inpatient and outpatient surgery.  The patient may be dropped off at the main entrance and picked up at the completion of the procedure.

The emergency room and hospital can safely take care of your medical needs.  If you are experiencing chest pain, shortness of breath, stroke or neurological issues, severe abdominal pain, significant traumatic injuries, or any concerning symptoms that cannot be managed by a primary doctor or specialist, then you should be seen in the emergency department.

We understand that this is a particularly stressful time.   Please know that we remain wholly dedicated to supporting you and your family during this challenging time.  If you have any questions about these changes, please contact (585) 786-2233.  Thank you for observing these important measures to promote a safe and healing environment for all.


HOSPITAL PATIENT VISITATION UPDATE 11/20/20:

Effective:  November 23, 2020

The health and safety of our patients, visitors, employees, and our communities remain a top priority at WCCHS. Therefore, with the increasing cases in Wyoming County, as well as surrounding counties, WCCH will be revising our current visitation guidelines.  Thank you for your ongoing understanding and cooperation.

We understand the importance of patient interaction with their loved ones and the role visitation plays in a patients’ emotional wellbeing and therefore in their recovery.  We encourage families to consider communication through phone and video chat as their primary means of communication.  The Patient and Family Services department can help set up the video call.  If an in-person visit is desired, the following precautions are in place to protect our community, patients, families, staff, and visitors, against the potential risk for acquiring and/or the spread of infectious disease.

The visitor must:

  • Be limited to one adult (18 years of age or older) person per visit, except as determined by the hospital.
  • Undergo temperature and symptom screening upon arrival. If a visitor does not pass the screening process or does not follow hospital protocols, they will not be allowed to visit.  Behavioral Health visitors will be screened upon arrival at the Behavioral Health entrance on the backside of the facility, Door “M.”
  • Perform hand hygiene (with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or the use of soap and water).
  • Wear a mask at all times. Visitors who fail to wear a mask will be asked to leave the facility.
  • Practice social distancing and remain at the bedside throughout the visit unless directed by hospital staff, except to use the restroom.

Visiting hours may vary by unit and will be at the discretion of the healthcare providers:

  • General inpatient units (Med/Surg 3rdFloor and ICU) and Behavioral Health:  limited to 1 visitor between 4pm and 6pm, daily.  Visitors will be allowed under special circumstances, for patients in imminent end-of-life situations and patients for whom a support person has been determined essential to the care of the patient.
  • Emergency Department:  No visitors allowed at this time with the exception of the special circumstances listed above for the inpatients.  If your loved one is admitted to the hospital between 4pm and 6pm, you may check-in at the screening station, to see if visitation is allowed.  Otherwise, you must return the next day during visiting hours.  Pediatric patients may have both parents as essential support persons.
  • Labor and Delivery:  limited to 1 designated support person and if applicable, a doula.  The support person must have a temperature check every 12 hours.
  • Same-Day Surgery and Procedures:  limited to 1 visitor, starting at patient arrival through the intake process and visitor will be contacted to rejoin the patient for the discharge process.
  • Outpatient Clinics and Services:  No visitors allowed at this time unless the patient needs wheelchair or communication assistance.  Scheduling of patients must be done to limit time in waiting rooms due to space constraints and social distancing requirements.

We understand that this is a particularly stressful time.  Please know that we remain wholly dedicated to supporting you and your family during this challenging time.  If you have any questions about these changes, please contact (585) 786-2233.  Thank you for observing these important measures to promote a safe and healing environment for all.


NURSING HOME VISITATION UPDATED 11/03/2020:

Beginning today, November 2, 2020, the skilled nursing facility window visits will resume. All staff and residents have tested negative for COVID-19. Please call (585)-786-8940 extension 7900 to schedule your visit in November. We are not booking any visits for December at this time. We will continue to monitor residents and test staff weekly. As you are most likely aware, the community is experiencing an increase in the number of positive cases of COVID-19. We will continue to remain vigilant in our screening of staff and twice-daily screening of residents.


NURSING HOME VISITATION UPDATE 09/24/20:

Changes once again in the visitation guidelines for the Skilled Nursing Facility. At this time we qualify to do face-to-face visits, six feet apart. If there were a positive staff or resident, we would lose the ability to allow visits face-to-face. The two main changes that affect our residents and their families are:

  1. The facility must be COVID-19 free for fourteen (14) days (this was twenty-eight (28) days).
  2. All visitors must have a COVID-19 test that has been within the past seven (7) days prior to the visit (this was not required before).

With this significant change, we will be returning to our window visits (between the glass). If the visitor can provide a copy of a negative COVID-19 test within seven (7) days we will allow a face-to-face visit. This change has decreased the number of visits we will be able to do as we can only schedule one at a time. Please feel free to reach out to your state and local legislators and to the governor’s office as well to let them know your feelings about the most recent changes.


NURSING HOME VISITATION UPDATE 7/20/20:

Long-awaited in-person visits will begin today for the Skilled Nursing Facility. We have submitted our plan to the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), and have received notification that we qualified for visits. Please note that many restrictions are in place for us and we are unable to allow visitors on the units or anywhere upstairs. Please review the following:

  • You must make an appointment for the visit and only two (2) people per resident at one scheduled time.
    • Please Call Sue Winiecki, Activities Director for an appointment (585)-786-8940 X4709.
    • YOU MUST BE ON TIME OR WE CANNOT ACCOMMODATE THE VISIT.
  • Visits will occur outside six (6) feet apart from each other.
  • All visitors must be screened (temperature and questions) prior to the visit occurring.
  • If the weather is not conducive to outside visits, the visit will still occur inside the building in a designated area.
    • Inside visits, we can only allow one visitor per resident. (if two (2) people come, the visit time can be split).
  • All visitors and residents must wear a mask during the visit. We also cannot allow any contact (hugging, etc.) you must remain six (6) feet apart.
  • Visits will be 30 minutes maximum to allow everyone to have an equal chance to schedule a visit.
  • Visits will be available Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday; if you have special situations please speak with Sue when you call. The hours available will be 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

We are pleased that we are able to do outside visits; many nursing homes do not qualify to offer these visits. We can easily lose our ability to provide visits if one of the following occurs:

  • A resident tests positive for COVID-19
  • A staff member tests positive for COVID-19
  • We have to continue to COVID test all staff weekly and report results.
  • Fail to report daily to the NYSDOH and Center for Disease Control (CDC) the status of all residents, staff, personal protective equipment (PPE), and testing abilities.
  • Shortage of PPE
  • Shortage of staffing

These are just some of the examples that can cause us to lose the ability to do visits. Please bear with us as we do our best to accommodate these visits.

If you have any questions or problems please feel free to reach out to your Unit Manager, Social Worker, or one of the Administrative team.


NURSING HOME VISITATION UPDATE 7/13/20:

Friends and Families of the Skilled Nursing Facility Residents – The new guidance from the Department of Health for Nursing Home visitation is extremely strict and requires a large amount of preparation to comply prior to allowing visits. Visits will only be allowed outside and in periods of inclement weather in a large room with good ventilation and a maximum of 10 people. We still will not be able to allow visitors on any of the units. Resident families/Contacts will be receiving a letter soon regarding visitation. Please check the website and Facebook page to learn when you can begin scheduling for these visits. We appreciate your patience with a number of things we must do to prepare.


HOSPITAL PATIENT VISITATION UPDATE 6/19/20:

Effective:  June 22, 2020

There is no guidance to open the Wyoming County Nursing Facility to visitors at this time.

The health and safety of our patients, visitors, employees, and our communities remain a top priority at WCCHS. Therefore, in line with the latest guidelines issued by the New York State Department of Health related to COVID‑19, we have revised our visiting policy.  Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

We understand the importance of patient interaction with their loved ones and the role visitation plays in a patients’ emotional wellbeing and therefore in their recovery.  We encourage families to consider communication through phone and video chat as their primary means of communication.  The Patient and Family Services department can help set up the video call.  If an in-person visit is desired, the following precautions are in place to protect our community, patients, families, staff, and visitors, against the potential risk for acquiring and/or the spread of infectious disease.

The visitor must:

  • Be limited to one adult (18 years of age or older) person per visit, except as determined by the hospital.
  • Undergo temperature and symptom screening upon arrival. If a visitor does not pass the screening process or does not follow hospital protocols, they will not be allowed to visit.  Behavioral Health visitors will be screened upon arrival at the Behavioral Health entrance on the backside of the facility, Door “M.”
  • Perform hand hygiene (with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or the use of soap and water).
  • Wear a mask at all times. Visitors who fail to wear a mask will be asked to leave the facility.
  • Practice social distancing and remain at the bedside throughout the visit unless directed by hospital staff, except to use the restroom.

Visiting hours may vary by unit.

  • General inpatient units (Med/Surg 3rd Floor and ICU) and Behavioral Health: limited to 1 visitor between 2pm and 6pm, daily.
  • Emergency Department: limited to 1 visitor, starting at patient arrival.  If your loved one is admitted to the hospital between 2pm and 6pm, you may accompany them to their room.  Otherwise, you must return the next day during visiting hours.  Pediatric patients may have both parents as essential support persons.
  • Labor and Delivery: limited to 1 designated support person and if applicable, a doula.  The support person must have a temperature check every 12 hours.  If the support person chooses to leave the unit, they will not be allowed re-entry.
  • Same-Day Surgery and Procedures: limited to 1 visitor, starting at patient arrival through the intake process and visitor will be contacted to rejoin the patient for the discharge process.
  • Outpatient Clinics and Services: limited to 1 visitor only when the patient needs assistance.  Scheduling of patients must be done to limit time in waiting rooms due to space constraints and social distancing requirements.

We understand that this is a particularly stressful time.  Please know that we remain wholly dedicated to supporting you and your family during this challenging time.  If you have any questions about these changes, please contact (585) 786-2233.  Thank you for observing these important measures to promote a safe and healing environment for all.


VISITOR UPDATE 6/17/20:

WCCHS recognizes the importance of our patients to see family and other visitors during their illnesses and/or recovery. We also recognize the need to keep our patients and staff safe during these reopening phases in the region. We ask for your patience while we await guidance from the NYS Department of Health and work through revisions of our current visiting policies. We anticipate that by early next week we will be able to post our new policy.


WCCHS, in compliance with today’s New York State Department of Health guidance regarding visitors to hospitals, will immediately suspend all visitation except when medically necessary or for family members or legal representatives of patients in imminent end-of-life situations.  This restriction is being implemented in an effort to protect our vulnerable patients and staff from avoidable exposure to infection.  Your compassionate care for them is paramount, as is your own safety and health.  Thank you for your continued commitment and dedication to our patients during this very troubling time.

Any visitors meeting these exceptions will be screened for symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, or fever) or potential exposure to someone with COVID-19.  The duration and number of visits will be minimized.


TRUSTED RESOURCES

http://www.wyomingco.net/203/Health-Department

https://health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/  

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus


REPORTING Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the source of the reporting data?

The Wyoming County Health Department (WCHD) receives results of positive COVID-19 laboratory results, regardless of where the lab test was performed.  Laboratories are required to report results to the New York State Department of Health through the Electronic Clinical Laboratory Reporting System. Throughout the day, clinical staff receive updates regarding the number of tests conducted, and whether the test results are negative or positive for COVID-19.  Positive cases are immediately contact traced by WCHD clinical staff.

What is contact tracing?

Contact tracing is the process of identifying people who may have had interaction with an infected person (“contacts”) and collection of further information about these contacts. By tracing the close contacts of infected individuals, testing them for infection, restricting movement (quarantine), monitoring them and tracing their contacts in turn, public health officials reduce infections in the community. The goal of contact tracing is to interrupt ongoing transmission of illness and reduce spread of infection (“Slow the Spread”).

Why do different data sources report different numbers?

Reports may be released at varying times of the day, using different source data and time/date cutoffs, which can create a discrepancy.  Additionally, given the volume of COVID-19 testing and patients in New York State in a relatively short period of time, all counties in NY have noted that the NYS data has varied somewhat from locally reported data since the pandemic began.

What’s the difference between Mandatory Quarantine, Isolation and Precautionary Quarantine? When is someone considered “Recovered”?

Mandatory Quarantine: Person has been in close contact (within 6 feet) with someone who is positive, whether displaying symptoms for COVID-19 or not. Quarantine refers to separating people for a period of time who are, or may have been exposed, but may not be showing signs of illness.

Mandatory Isolation: Person has tested positive for COVID-19, whether or not displaying symptoms.  Isolation refers to separating people who are sick from those who are not sick for a period of time.

Precautionary Quarantine: Person is known to have had a proximate exposure (being in the same enclosed environment, but at greater than 6 feet separation) to a positive person, but has not had direct close contact with a positive person and is not displaying symptoms.

Recovered:  For some, this refers to a COVID-19 positive case who has isolated for a minimum of 7 days and has been fever free without the use of fever-reducing medication for at least 72 hours; these patients must wear a mask for 14 days from the onset of symptoms.  The criteria for “recovered” status have changed since the beginning of the outbreak, as new data and research have accumulated.  It is not currently known if recovered patients are protected from COVID-19 reinfection or how long they remain infectious.  It is not currently known what percentage of the population may be asymptomatic carriers.  This is the basis for maintaining social distance to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Refer to the NYS Department of Health website for the most recent “Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)” https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2020/04/doh_covid19_faqs_updated_041720.pdf

How frequently will the map be updated?

The “Genesee-Orleans-Wyoming Health Departments COVID-19 Case Tracker” data will be updated Monday through Friday at approximately 4pm.  New and active cases are monitored by the Wyoming County Health Department 7 days per week.  If there are urgent updates that should occur any day of the week, a press release will be issued.

What if I don’t have the internet? How can I get important information?

Call the Wyoming County Response Line at 786-8911 Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm to get information and referral to important local resources for a wide range of needs.  Call Center staff can also provide you with current COVID-19 statistics.  It is very important to get your information from trusted and reliable sources.  Call Center staff cannot provide individual medical advice or a diagnosis through the hotline.

Do the totals include cases in residential facilities (such as long term care/nursing homes and state correctional facilities)?

Yes.  The New York State Department of Health and Wyoming County Health Department work cooperatively with Wyoming County skilled nursing facilities and adult care facilities on COVID-19 prevention and response.

The New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) works with the New York State Department of Health to identify any potentially exposed individuals in NYS Correctional Facilities and provide notifications.