We would like to provide our weekly update on how COVID-19 is impacting Luthercare communities and remind you of the importance of remaining diligent in mitigating the spread of the virus.
As a reminder to our residents, mask wearing is required when leaving apartments or cottages, when picking up meals, when going to the store, or anytime you may come into contact with others. This is a critical time, and we ask you to continue to practice these precautions to keep yourself, your neighbors, your friends, and your loved ones healthy and safe.
Visitation to Luthercare communities remains restricted. Visitors are not permitted in Healthcare or Personal Care, with the exception of compassionate care visits. Campus grounds are closed to the outside community; this includes biking and walking on campus. Visitation for Independent Living apartments and cottages is also restricted at this time. If you are an essential adult (age 18+) caregiver, please contact a campus director to arrange a visit. To learn more and review our updated visitation guidelines, please visit the news portion of our website, www.Luthercare.org.
The Luther Acres Healthcare Center is currently providing care to three residents in our center’s COVID-19 unit. The individuals were admitted from either our Personal Care communities or following a hospitalization. All will remain on the unit until transmission-based precautions are removed. This past week, two residents successfully transitioned out of the unit and are on the road to recovery. Universal testing of staff and residents continues. Two team members who had tested are expected to return to work this week, after meeting all CDC guidelines. We are adhering to the regulatory standards regarding continued universal testing from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Testing is taking place twice a week due to the Lancaster County positivity rate, which is at a level Red, or high community spread. As we look forward to our first two COVID-19 vaccine clinic dates on January 9 and January 30, our administrative team is currently working on obtaining resident, family and team member consents for vaccination. We will continue regular communication to all resident responsible parties to provide personal updates regarding their loved ones.
This past week, an Independent Living resident in the Luther Townhome Apartment Building tested positive for the virus at a local hospital. That individual is currently in quarantine, recovering from the infection.
In Personal Care, a total of 16 residents and three team members have tested positive for COVID-19 during the past week. The staff members are in quarantine. Of the 16 residents who tested positive, three were transferred to the COVID-19 unit in our Healthcare Centers due to the need for a higher level of care. One resident is receiving treatment in a hospital, and six of the residents remain asymptomatic and are considered recovered. The remaining six residents continue receiving care and observation in Personal Care. Two other residents who tested positive earlier this month continue to receive care and treatment at our Spang Crest community in Lebanon.
We are saddened to report that a Personal Care resident who had tested positive for the virus earlier this month passed away late last week. Please join us in keeping the resident’s loved ones and our staff in your thoughts and prayers.
St. John’s Herr Estate
In Personal Care, three residents have tested positive for the coronavirus and are in quarantine. One team member has tested positive and is in quarantine at home. Personal Care residents and campus staff continue to undergo weekly universal testing. We are adhering to the regulatory standards from the Department of Human Services regarding continued universal testing based on the positivity rate within the county.
We are saddened to report that two Independent Living residents who resided in our apartment building have passed away after testing positive for the virus. Please join us in sending thoughts and prayers to their families during this difficult time.
Meanwhile, among Independent Living Apartment Building residents who tested positive, four are quarantining in their apartments; two are currently hospitalized; and another is receiving treatment and rehabilitation services at Luther Acres Healthcare Center in Lititz. Five residents have recovered and are no longer in quarantine.
Spang Crest currently has 38 residents who have tested positive in the Healthcare Center. There are no positive cases in Personal Care. The positive residents are either in isolation in our COVID unit or isolating in place in their rooms. All residents will be tested again on Thursday. Staff are following appropriate droplet precautions in all rooms in the Healthcare Center.
In regards to team members, we have four new employees who tested positive following last week’s testing. All staff were tested on Monday and will be tested again on Thursday.
Spang Crest has been notified that its first two COVID-19 vaccination clinic dates will be January 4 and January 25.
Treatment measures remain in place to minimize risk throughout the building. We are adhering to the regulatory standards regarding continued universal testing from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Testing is taking place twice a week due to the Lebanon County positivity rate, which is at a level Red, or high community spread. We will continue regular communication to all resident responsible parties to provide more personal updates regarding their loved ones.
We encourage families and residents to communicate regularly through phone calls, texts, video chat, and other virtual means. We have team members who can help walk you through the process. If you need assistance, please reach out to the Executive Director at your campus. They are:
Luther Acres Executive Director Craig Shelly, 717.626.1171
St. John’s Herr Estate Executive Director Anita Martin, 717.684.0678
Spang Crest Executive Director Dan Deitzel, 717.274.1495
Founded in 1949, Luthercare, a social ministry organization affiliated with the Lower Susquehanna Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and a member of Lutheran Services in America, is a leading provider of independent, personal care and skilled care residences in Lancaster and Lebanon counties. Luthercare operates Luther Acres, a Continuing Care Retirement Community in Lititz, Pa.; Spang Crest, a rehabilitation center, skilled nursing and memory support personal care community in Lebanon, Pa.; and St. John’s Herr Estate, an independent living and personal care community in Columbia, Pa. Additionally, Luthercare operates PA Keystone Stars-accredited child care and early learning centers in Marietta, Reamstown and Annville. Luthercare, a pioneer in Child Care Programs, also offers a Mentoring Program, which aids home-based child care providers in Lebanon and Lancaster counties.