Last week, the province of Ontario announced that Long-Term Care residents can once again leave their residences for short-stay and temporary absences. Following the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, residents can now spend time away from the Four Seasons Lodge for either day-trips or overnight absences.
Short-stay absences include day-trips for health care, social, or other reasons and do not include an overnight stay. Notice must be provided to the Four Seasons Lodge at least 5 business days prior to an outing. Residents will be provided with a medical mask to be worn at all times outside of the Home, and will be reminded of the importance of public health measures such as physical distancing. When they return home to the Four Seasons Lodge, residents will be actively screened but are not required to be tested for COVID-19 or to self-isolate.
Temporary absences include one or more nights away from the Four Seasons Lodge, and are decided on at the discretion of the Home on a case-by-case basis. Risk factors of the absence will be considered, such as the safety risks of a family weekend vs. those of a large gathering. Requests for a temporary absence must be submitted to the Director of Care, Allison Lepack, at least 5 business days prior to the leave. Unlike a short-stay absence, residents returning from a temporary absence will be required to self-isolate for 14 days for the protection of their neighbours.
“As members of our community begin to resume activities, we look forward to our residents being able to spend time with their loved ones again, outside of the home”, said Allison Lepack, Director of Care at the Four Seasons Lodge Long-Term Care Home.
Janna Hotson, Administrator for the Home, expressed that, “It is our hope that these welcome changes from the Government of Ontario will improve residents’ quality of life, while keeping them safe”.
The Four Seasons Lodge will continue to make every effort to support the safety and emotional wellbeing of residents, and will share further updates as direction is received from the province.