How New Vista is Responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Since the first reports of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) were diagnosed in the United States in January, we have been working to help ensure that we are prepared. New Vista’s number one priority is the health and safety of our residents, patients, and employees.
We understand there is concern, so we want you to know the steps that we have taken. The first letter from the President/CEO, Myra May, came to you last week. It is also posted on the website for your resource.

We’re Here For You

Your experience with our facility might be slightly different for a time. Thank you for your understanding as we navigate this unprecedented crisis together as a community and a nation. Our commitment to helping you remains unchanged. Please know that we are still here to serve you, and are ready to answer your questions.

In addition to following our existing communicable disease outbreak protocols, we’ve implemented additional precautionary measures:

  • Providing education to staff for monitoring residents’ health to detect possible health issues before symptoms manifest.
  • Updated and enhanced the cleaning protocols at the facility to address COVID-19.
  • Video calling tools like FaceTime and Window Visitation for residents and families are encouraged to combat social isolation and loneliness.

We are monitoring each employee as they are coming into the facility according to CDC guidelines.

Common Questions About The Coronavirus

What are some illness warning signs that residents may have?

The following symptoms may appear two to 14 days after exposure: (average is 5.2 days)

  • Fever-this is significant and would be called a change of condition.
  • Sore throat-may or may not occur.
  • Cough-which develops slowly over 5 days.
  • Shortness of breath-may occur between the 3-5 day and be classified as a change of condition.
  • A general feeling of being unwell (body aches, chills)
  • Diarrhea or nausea-not one of the primary symptoms that initially develop but the complaint should not go without observation and evaluation.
  • Lack of smell or hearing-This occurs because the virus attacks the cells that smell and hearing come from.



How does the virus spread?

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new disease, and we’re still learning how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes and to what extent it may spread in the US.


Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person:

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.


Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
  • Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.


Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects:

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose or possibly eyes. We encourage everyone not to touch their face.


How easily the virus spreads:

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

The virus that causes COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in some affected geographic areas.


What is New Vista doing to help protect residents and employees?

Out of an abundance of caution, we have implemented a number of measures, including, but not limited to:

  • We are following the guidelines put out by the CDC and the California Department of Public Health.
  • Re-educated our teams on the appropriateness of infection prevention measures which are now a part of how we operate.
  • Suspended planned or sponsored group outings (with the exception of necessary healthcare-related appointments such as dialysis or radiation therapy).
  • Restricted visitors and non-essential health personnel from the facilities, except in end-of-life situations (which are reviewed on a case by case basis) or pursuant to the guidance of public health officials.
  • Conducting health screenings on anyone coming into the facilities.
  • Additionally, we are doing the following:
    • Ensuring that any of our employees who are sick stay home.
    • Providing regular updates to our teams to answer any and all questions.
    • Taking this virus very seriously and acting out of an abundance of caution.
    • Reviewing reputable health websites for updates on a daily basis to be able to share the latest news and information.


How will you determine when to test residents or associates if they are showing symptoms of COVID-19?

We are closely following CDC and local government official testing guidelines.



What does/will the process of testing for the virus look like?

Per the CDC and official guidelines, this process is handled on a case-by-case basis with the physician and the Department of Public Health notification. If there is a question about the resident’s condition, we will inform the responsible party at the same time.



Do you have separate rooms and restrooms for residents who show symptoms?

We are not admitting active cases of COVID-19 into any New Vista facility. If a current resident does develop symptoms, we will inform the attending physician and follow the California Department of Public Health guidelines. We anticipate that we will be instructed to then place the resident in an isolation room.


What precautions are you taking to help ensure the virus is not brought into your communities?

To reduce the risk of exposure in the facilities, we are currently restricting visitors, except for end-of-life situations (reviewed on a case-by-case basis) or pursuant to the guidance of public health officials.  We are also conducting health screenings on anyone coming into the facility.

In addition, we have suspended New Vista-planned group activities and all nonessential visitors from entering the facilities..

If a confirmed case were to occur, we would continue to act in full compliance with the CDC, local and state health authorities.


What are we doing to stay safe?

  • Personal safety measures:
    • Avoid close contact with individuals who are sick;
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands;
    • Wash hands often with soap and water for a least 20 seconds;
    • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60%; alcohol if soap and water are not available;
    • Use coughing etiquette (see CDC guidelines).
  • Facility safety measures:
    • Social distancing;
    • Reviewed cleaning protocols and purchased steam cleaner that kills a virus at 300-700 degrees (viruses are killed at 212 degrees);
    • Restricting visitor access to end-of-life situations; these are reviewed on a case-by-case basis;
    • Performing health screenings on associates, and essential health care providers coming into the facilities;
    • Encouraging  “virtual visit” like FaceTime and Window Visits in order to help combat social isolation and loneliness.


Are residents allowed to leave their rooms?

Yes, in most cases, residents are allowed to leave their rooms. However, we are using social distancing practices and educating residents in their resident council meetings.

In accordance with the recommendations of the CDC, we will ask our residents with respiratory infections or suspected COVID-19 to self-isolate in their rooms for the protection of others at the facility.


If you have questions, who should you call?

There are a few ways to stay informed as to what it is going on:

  • First, contact the Executive Director.
  • Schedule a phone call with your loved and let the Executive Director know you have questions and they can join in on the call by using the phone speaker.
  • Look at the web site to see if it answers your questions. If not, give us a call.