Letter to Our Friends of Skylark: COVID-19 Next Steps

Friends of Skylark:

I’m writing to share some thoughts concerning Skylark as we approach the 60-day mark of our temporary closing of our adult day centers and the continued shelter-in-place orders for seniors and the medically fragile.

The news stories continue apace. In Georgia, Governor Kemp is determined to reopen society and begin the process of heading back to a new normal. Other states not so much. In Wisconsin, the state Supreme Court struck down the “Safer at Home” program including shelter in place orders. As society reopens, there are not as many facemasks as I would have thought or as much social distancing as we need.

I digress. Here’s what we’re thinking at Skylark:

Reopening (Tentative):

Our current plans are to reopen in the latter half of June when the current shelter in place order for those 65 and older is set to expire. This is a fluid plan though. As I’ve talked to individuals knowledgeable about Georgia public policy plans, the predictions range from of course the order will be lifted, to probably not, to maybe in September, or my favorite: “I’m not sure the Governor knows yet.”

Expanded Services: Home Care

We understand the need for elder care doesn’t disappear because of a pandemic. We have served our members with home care for many years even though we’ve always been better known for our adult day centers. In response to the current requirements to shelter in place and our current situation, we have decided to expand our home care services using the same associates that normally work in our centers.

Give us a shot! Much like restaurants moving to take out options, home care is an opportunity to earn the revenue to keep us healthy and to keep the caregiving staff you know and trust employed for the long-term. We are all excited about this opportunity. We think it will help us become even better at achieving our mission: Inspiring Freedom, Hope, and Joy in our Elders and Those Who Love Them.

If you’re interested please contact Fran Weigard on her cell 404-617-5851, by email at fweigard@skylarkseniorcare.com, or the main number 404-410-1510.

Safety:

As we have talked with our members and families, safety is top of mind. We want to keep our members healthy, safe, and strong. COVID-19 is a difficult challenge. Please know we have been working steadily on this. We have learned more about how to meet these challenging times by considering recommendations from the CDC, the Georgia Department of Health, Governor Kemp’s executive orders, our attorney, and our insurance companies. There’s a lot of information and almost none of it directly discusses adult day. While we will continue to improve our efforts, let me share some current thoughts:

  1. Screen all Members and Associates: This will include taking temperatures and asking questions about symptoms daily. Those not meeting the standards of the screening will need to stay home. We will recommend that the individual see their physician to determine next steps. We know that a fever may indicate COVID-19 or a sinus infection or something else. We will follow the physician’s directions for the resumption of service to include possible self-quarantine.
  2. Personal Protective Equipment: All Members and Associates will wear masks at the center. Our Associates will wear a mask in the home. Different levels of PPE will be required depending on care provided and the proximity of the Member and Associate.
  3. Social Distancing: We expect to run our programs while respecting social distancing needs. We will manage our daily programs differently to allow for distancing.
  4. Sanitizing/Disinfecting: Before closing we began sanitizing the centers on a regular basis. We are considering a range options to improve our infection control policies. We are confident that we can keep the centers safe for our members.

We look forward to seeing you soon at the center or with home care.

Ned Morgens, CEO

Skylark Senior Care

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