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Via Elegante's COVID 19 Response

Since late February 2020, Via Elegante’s response to COVID-19 has been proactive and precautionary. Our Management Team has stayed focused on integrating the challenges of COVID that have been placed upon us with our mission to enhance the lives of our residents, their families, and our staff.

As we approach the Fall of 2020 and learn to live and work within this pandemic, we find our pace steadying from a sprint to a marathon. We believe that a focus on testing, support for our essential workers, and finding ways to use our unique environment creates an opportunity to enhance the lives of our entire Via Elegante Family to thrive during these difficult times.

Testing:
The core of our philosophy is to keep COVID-19 out of our communities by closely monitoring and testing staff as much as possible. In Tucson, we have partnered with the Pima County Health Department to administer on-site Rapid Tests multiple times weekly to all employees. Receiving results within 20 minutes ensures that anyone testing positive is pulled from the schedule before they are able to work with residents and team mates. Our Sierra Vista communities currently receive bi-weekly testing and we are working to bring rapid tests to this region.

Essential Worker Support:
In addition to stringent testing measures, our Caregivers are central to our approach. Since March, 2020 we have enacted a significant COVID-19 pay increase to all caregivers and kitchen staff. Not only has this helped keep staff happy and thriving during this challenging period, it has helped to attract some of Southern Arizona’s top caregiving talent. As part of this, we have requested our staff practice social isolation when not at work. Their response has been overwhelming, and it has been amazing to see them understand the gravity of this situation and the important role they play.

Unique Physical Environment:
Our communities also have unique home-like environments that contribute to making a difference in the wellbeing of our residents and family members. Our home designs provide for a number of different household sizes. Our Tucson Foothills community is comprised of 3 homes, each with 10 residents in private rooms. Our Tucson Mountains and Sierra Vista Canyons Communities each have homes which generally accommodate up to 23 residents in both private and shared rooms. In these settings, residents are able to enjoy spending time with their housemates instead of being required to socially isolate to their room. Our communities have activities that keep spirits high and contribute to our goal of making life meaningful for everyone in our community. (Check out our activities calendar here and some great pictures from our fun events here).

Visitation:
When the pandemic first hit in late February, we severely restricted all visitation to our communities, with imminent hospice exceptions. Until now, visitation restrictions have been our biggest challenge to overcome. With the increased accessibility of COVID-19 testing and new Arizona Department of Health visitation guidelines, we now have a unique ability to allow a variety of personal visits for our residents and their loved ones. To accommodate this, we have established detailed Policies and Procedures for these visitations and will have designated staff available to help facilitate meaningful and safe interactions. Some highlights of these options include:

  • Video visits*
      o Are a great way for our residents to connect with loved ones unable to visit on campus
      o Are available at all of our communities, Monday through Friday
      o Must be scheduled during business hours at least 24 hours in advance with the Administrative Specialist (drop-in or unscheduled visits cannot be accommodated)
      o Are limited to one half hour a day, once a week
  • Window visits*
      o Are ideal for larger groups to see their loved ones together
    1. o Are available at all of our communities, Monday through Friday
    1. o Must be scheduled during business hours at least 24 hours in advance with our Activities Director (drop-in or unscheduled visits cannot be accommodated)
    1. o Are limited to one half hour a day, once a week
    1. o Limited to no more than ten people
    1. o Visitors must have no signs or symptoms of COVID-19
    1. o Visitors must have no known exposure within last 14 days to anyone who tested positive or has signs or symptoms of COVID-19
  • Individual visits*
    1. o Are designed to bring our residents closer to their loved ones
      o Are available at all of our communities in designated areas within our beautiful outdoor courtyards
      o Can also be facilitated inside designated areas of our clubhouses for residents that live in our Tucson Mountains and Sierra Vista Canyons communities if the visitor provides evidence of a negative COVID-19 test in which the test sample was taken within 48 hours of the visit (we are able to help facilitate this testing at a nominal cost, including rapid testing in Tucson). Those visiting must also attest to having isolated in the time between the test sample collection and the visitation.
      o Must be scheduled during business hours at least 24 hours in advance with our Activities Director (drop-in or unscheduled visits cannot be accommodated)
      o Are limited to one hour a day, once a week
      o Limited to no more than two people
      o Must have their temperature checked by Via Elegante and sanitize their hands immediately prior to visit
      o Must have no signs or symptoms of COVID-19
      o Must have no known exposure within last 14 days to anyone who tested positive or has signs or symptoms of COVID-19
      o Observe at least 6 feet of space between themselves and loved ones at all times
      o Wear an N95 mask at all times while visiting (these can be provided by Via Elegante if needed)
      o Sign and adhere to Via Elegante’s COVID-19 Visitation agreement
  • Individual in room companion*
    1. o In room companions can only be accommodated for residents that have a private room with patio doors/immediate exterior access
      o Can only use the exterior access to the room and cannot come into the home
      o Must be scheduled during business hours at least 24 hours in advance with our Activities Director (drop-in or unscheduled visits cannot be accommodated)
      o Are limited to one hour per day, three days a week
      o Only one companion can be designated per month who resides in Pima County or Cochise County. Note, family members from outside of these counties are not eligible to be in room companions
      o Must have their temperature checked by Via Elegante and sanitize their hands immediately prior to each visit
      o Must have no signs or symptoms of COVID-19
      o Must have no known exposure within last 14 days to anyone who tested positive or has signs or symptoms of COVID-19
      o Observe at least 6 feet of space between themselves and loved ones at all times;
      o Wear an N95 mask at all times while visiting (these can be provided by Via Elegante if needed)
      o Sign and adhere to Via Elegante’s COVID-19 In Room Companion agreement, which requires social isolation when not at Via Elegante
      o Must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test in which the test sample was taken within 48 hours of the visit (we are able to help facilitate this testing at a nominal cost, including rapid testing in Tucson). Those visiting must also attest to having isolated in the time between the test sample collection and the visitation

*Failure of any parties involved (including residents) to adhere to guidelines outlined above may result in revocation of these privileges. We reserve the right to change these visitation options at any time.

Admissions and The Future:
As we look forward, we continue to accept new residents to our community. We have developed a system that includes a COVID test before move-in and a brief stay in our new, separate admission homes in Tucson and Sierra Vista to help ease the transition to our new environment and ensure the safety of our entire community.

Our entire team is dedicated 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to you and your loved ones. This process is constantly evolving, and we are committed to providing you and your loved ones the best experience possible. We appreciate all of the support from our families, residents, and our amazing professional caregiving staff. We are in this marathon together.

For more information or to schedule a tour Click Here for Tucson Foothills, Click Here for Sierra Vista, Click Here for Tucson Mountains.

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