604.885.7455 info@scacl.ca

COVID-19 – SCACL STAKEHOLDERS UPDATES

September 3, 2021

SCACL Safety Plan – SEPTEMBER 3, 2021 (Update #8)

SCACL maintains a Communicable Disease Safety Plan, which impacts stakeholders, as the plan states: all visitors may not enter a SCACL facility when showing signs of a communicable illness and must get tested if showing signs of Covid 19.

Mask Mandate

Masks are once again mandated in public settings as per public health order below.

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/info/restrictions#long-term-care

 

Current SCACL Protocols

Staff Supported Home Settings:

Masks are not mandatory indoors at residential worksites for vaccinated staff and residents, but are recommended. Masks are required in all public settings as per public health order and at SCACL public programs. Masks are required while driving in a vehicle with persons served.

Masks are required for all visitors and contractors while in common areas of the facility.

Visitors can remove a mask while in the private room of a resident, and are socially distanced from others.

 

Mermaid Facility

Masks are required indoors as we have “public” attend and our doors are open.

Masks are required in all public settings as per the health order above. Masks are required while driving in a vehicle with persons served

Masks can be removed when eating or with adequate social distance, such as at work in a private office or when outside or with adequate social distancing.

 

Vaccine Passports

SCACL will be supporting residents to receive their vaccine passport

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/proof

January 2021

SCACL Safety Plan – JANUARY 2021 (Update #7)

This is an updated safety plan and will replace previous editions.

SCACL had a small outbreak of CV-19 in December 2020 with three staff testing positive. No supported individual has tested positive to date.

SCACL operated essential services between March and June of 2020. Services re-opened for employment and community inclusion programs in May of 2020, with a small cluster model of support and outreach food security programs implemented. As of January, 2021, we continue to operate at this level. All individuals we support are deemed to be at high risk if they caught the virus.
SCACL will continue to follow provincial safety principles for the duration of the pandemic. These principles include:
o Staying informed, being prepared and following public health orders and recommendations.
o Practising good hand hygiene, and encouraging staff/persons served to avoid touching their face.
o Conducting daily wellness checks of both staff and supported individuals
o Ensuring staff and persons served stay at home and away from others when ill – with no exceptions.
o Maintaining physical distancing e.g., no handshakes or hugs, keeping the number of contacts low and keeping a safe distance from each other.
o Making necessary contacts safer with appropriate controls, e.g., using barriers or reducing numbers of staff/supported persons in one place.
o Increasing cleaning of frequently touched (contact) surfaces
o Use of PPE in all facilities. and encouraging the use of masks for persons served wherever possible (as long as the individual can wear a mask)
o Minimizing non-essential personal travel.
The Risk

The virus that causes COVID-19 spreads in several ways, including through contact with respiratory droplets when a person coughs or sneezes, and from touching a contaminated surface before touching the face, nose or eyes.

The risk of person-to-person transmission is increased the closer you come to other people, the amount of time you spend near them, and the number of people you come near. Physical distancing measures help mitigate this risk. Air circulation (outdoors) also helps to mitigate this risk.

Some infections can be spread by exposure to the virus in small droplets and particles that can linger in the air for minutes to hours. These viruses may be able to infect people who are further than 6 feet away from the person who is infected or after that person has left the space. This risk of this occurring is higher in small enclosed spaces. The documented transmissions occurred within enclosed spaces that had inadequate ventilation. Sometimes the infected person was breathing heavily, for example, while singing or exercising. Under these circumstances, scientists believe that the amount of infectious smaller droplets and particles produced by the people with COVID-19 became concentrated enough to spread the virus to other people. The people who were infected were in the same space during the same time or shortly after the person with COVID-19 had left.

Available data indicate that it is much more common for the virus that causes COVID-19 to spread through close contact with a person who has COVID-19 than through airborne transmission.

The risk of surface transmission is increased when many people contact the same surface, and when those contacts happen in short intervals of time. Effective cleaning and hygiene practices help mitigate this risk.

Prevention
First level protection (elimination): Limit the number of people in your workplace where possible by implementing work-from-home arrangements, establishing occupancy limits, rescheduling work tasks, or other means. Rearrange workspaces to ensure that workers are at least 2 m (6 ft) from co-workers, customers, and members of the public.
SCACL’s occupancy levels have been reduced based on square footage:
103 = Four people in offices (includes one in the kitchen at a time) – no exit/entry via HR office. Posted occupancy is three, so there can be a fourth visitor.

104 = Six in total (one entry/exit way)

105 = Day Program area = Seven in total (dedicated exit/entry)
Supported Employment area = Three in total (dedicated exit/entry)
Further Breakdown of working areas
• 105 Kitchen = One person in the kitchen at a time (between the counters)
• 105 Rear administration office = Two people
• 105 Quiet Room = One person
• DP Main area = One staff and up to three persons served or two staff and two persons served (dedicated entry/exit door)
• 103 Admin staff are to continue rotating working remotely, no more than three people are working in 103 office at any given time
• Employees with underlying health issues (or persons in their households with health issues) to work remotely as much as is possible

Lunch/meal breaks will not be communal (except at residences where distance can be maintained)

Sinks and all contact points to be cleaned between use (supplies to be nearby)

Virtual meetings/training/interviews to be conducted where viable

Visitors at residences are reduced to essential only (family members and contractors)
Non-essential travel/community contact has been eliminated from programming
Shopping and purchasing to de done by dedicated persons per worksite
Second level protection (engineering controls): If you can’t always maintain physical distancing, install barriers such as plexiglass to separate people.
Plexiglass barriers were installed in SCACL vehicles in May 2020
Any new vehicles will have barriers installed
Supported persons must sit behind barriers and wear a mask if able. Employees must wear a mask while driving.
Mustering for Supported Employment occurs outside as much as is possible
Recreation activities occur outside as much as is possible
Indoor programming is at separate tables
Third level protection (administrative controls): Establish rules and guidelines, such as cleaning protocols, telling workers to not share tools, or implementing one-way doors or walkways.
SCACL has determined designated entry and exit ways in 105
SCACL has cleaning schedules and twice-daily contact point cleaning, professional cleaning twice per week of public buildings, and cleaning protocols for after each use of kitchen, bathrooms and vehicles.
Employees are not to share meals, or re-usable PPE (such as goggles, face shields)
Physical distancing is marked on floors in multi-use rooms in 104 and 105
Hands-free sanitizing stations are in every entryway in public buildings and sanitizer
Cleaning is done by employees and by professional cleaners.
Fourth level protection (PPE): If the first three levels of protection aren’t enough to control the risk, use masks. Ensure masks are selected and cared for appropriately and that workers are using masks correctly.
Masks are to be worn by employees as required by the public mandate, when unable to physically distance more than two meters from others, when on public transit or in SCACL vehicles, when providing personal care, when preparing food, when giving medication, when walking, entering or exiting through any SCACL facility, and otherwise when stated to do so by a safety or community protocol. (Note some health/community facilities require masks worn to be both paper and new, so best to always have some of those on your person). We highly recommend employees wear a mask for their entire shift.

Gloves are to be worn for all personal care, medication preparation/administration, food preparation/serving, cleaning and any other care tasks. Gloves are to be changed between tasks. i.e. cleaning and then food prep.

Gowns, eye googles and face shields will be available in case a supported person is ill or self- isolating and a further level of PPE is required. Non disposable PPE will not be shared, but labeled and re-used by one staff.

An emergency kit of PPE will be stored at each facility.
The main inventory of PPE is stored at 104. Ordering is done by QAD, Program Coordinators and Maintenance Coordinator. Cleaning supplies are stored in each facility.

SCACL purchased 3-layer logo-printed cloth masks that can be used by staff.

Training/Communications

New staff will be trained in the use of PPE and in safety protocols by Program Coordinators. Any new protocol or PPE will have the cleaning and care required to be part of the training provided.

Supported Individuals will be trained/supported to wear masks when able to do so, to use good hand hygiene and to follow public health orders. PPE will be provided to them as needed.

SCACL will communicate updates by email to employees. If urgent they will contact by telephone. Updates will also be sent to stakeholders by email/telephone as needed.

Note: Data sources are:
Vancouver Coastal Health
Canadian Centre for Disease Control
Worksafe BC

April 17, 2020

April 17, 2020 (Update #6)

The social distancing and no visitor rules brought in by the government and currently being followed by SCACL are to flatten the curve and to not overwhelm our health care system. The good news is this does seem to have slowed the spread of the virus in B.C. However, it doesn’t mean we should be complacent. We need to remain vigilant and follow the procedures we have put in place. The forecast is for at least a few more weeks of strict social distancing requirements. SCACL staff have been doing an amazing job. With every meeting, provincial call and information-seeking session we are having it reinforced that our efforts are exactly where we should be. 

Our no visitor policy remains in place, as does our dedicated staff to specific worksites.  However, we have determined that family members can visit from outside, i.e. through a window, as long as this is done safely. with appropriate social distancing, and the visitor is well and symptom-free when visiting.  While SCACL wants to support individuals in our residences to find safe ways to connect with their loved ones, we also are aware that some of the persons we served may find it difficult to understand this restriction and the window barrier.   Visitors may want to consider this carefully before arranging for a visit.  SCACL continues to encourage the use of Facetime and Zoom Meeting and our staff can facilitate setting up video conferences with one or multiple family members.   

We are also looking at resuming some respite activities on a case by case basis – please speak with Randy directly for specifics. 

We acknowledge that these are stressful and fear-inducing times and we can all use support to get through them. Attached are a few resources available to everyone.

 

Wellness Together Canada (newly launched yesterday) – https://ca.portal.gs/

 

Province of BC – COVID-19 virtual mental health supports – 

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/managing-your-health/mental-health-substance-use/virtual-supports-covid-19

 

Province of BC – Managing COVID-19 Stress, Anxiety & Depression

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/managing-your-health/mental-health-substance-use/managing-covid-stress 

 

If you think you may have CV-19 symptoms 

Please call the Respiratory Assessment Clinic (information below)

FYI: They will do house calls for vulnerable populations

The respiratory assessment clinic is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and is by appointment only. Bookings can be made by calling 604-740-1252 or by emailing: coastrespclinic@gmail.com.

There is also a CLBC AFTER HOURS Line 

https://mailchi.mp/54079f3245ad/reporting-covid-19-incidents-after-hours

 

If you think you may have CV-19 symptoms Also attached: 

  1. A booklet that was developed for persons served that might be useful in explaining the virus and safety tips in plain language;
  2. The Public Health Guidelines for the Social Services Providers.
April 9, 2020

April 9, 2020
Dear Stakeholders and friends of SCACL, 

Many of you may have heard on the news of the death of a caregiver for the Richmond Association for Community Living. This is a very tragic event and it resonates deeply with all of us here. It is a powerful and sombre reminder of what we are facing as a sector and more broadly as communities, within our country and globally. SCACL has informed our staff, and are offering support to staff and reaching out to the Richmond agency.

Our very best efforts can only mitigate the course of the virus spread; they cannot prevent it entirely. We will likely need to continue current health directives for at least the next several weeks and we know this is difficult as individuals being served are experiencing various levels of isolation. We are all likely to feel this more acutely as we move into the long Easter weekend but it is imperative that we stay the course and do not take risks that may put us in harm’s way. We need to remain confident that we will ultimately contain and control the spread of COVID-19, and that we will do that collectively. 

Therefore, SCACL will continue to uphold the no visitor policy until at least Friday, April 17th (as this is what is being recommended by Vancouver Coastal Health) We will update you next week with any changes to this policy. 

 Masks

 There is an agreement by Health spokespersons now that wearing a mask, or bandana when out in community may help to prevent you from spreading your own “moist droplets”. SCACL is having cloth masks made for all our facilities and we may have them available to you and your family if you need them. Please contact Clarence about how to access cloth masks. 

 Livestream 

We are continuing with a weekly livestream with Steve Wright and will send out the information each week ahead of this event. This has been popular and fun and had a nice participation rate.  

 

Respite/Homeshare 

Respite continues to be suspended unless deemed essential.   Please contact Randy for more information

Key Messages to Share from Vancouver Coastal Health

  • Practice physical distancing if you have to go out
  • If you think you have COVID-19 take the self-assessment here: covid19.thrive.health
  • Self-isolate at home for 10 days if you have COVID-19 symptoms 

 STAY SAFE – STAY HOME

 

SCACL wishes everyone a very happy virtual Easter

 From everyone on the Management Team

Clarence   Laurie   Randy   Sonja   Xerez

 

March 25, 2020

Dear friends/stakeholders/partners of SCACL,

The entire world has gone through enormous changes in the past week, and our federal, provincial and municipal governments are all responding to the CV-19 pandemic with daily updates. There were many developments over the weekend and SCACL is sending out this update to inform you of further changes in our service delivery.

SCACL’s priority remains the safety of our employees and the vulnerable population we support. To that end, we will be implementing some even stronger procedures for distancing and worker safety and hygiene procedures.

Effectively immediately: Wednesday, March 25

A Public Health Order issued by Vancouver Coastal Health:
The order states
“Vancouver Coastal Health prohibits long-term care staff and volunteers (with the exception of physicians, paramedics and laboratory technicians) from working at more than one health care facility”

This will affect SCACL staff and our current schedules.
SCACL is currently working closely with CUPE on how to mitigate the impact of this policy. There will be some staff re-deployed and shifts may change.

Extra Hygiene Precautions
We are implementing stricter and more prescriptive measures in all our programs to improve community social distancing and improve hygiene.

New SCACL Residential Visitor Policy
Based on information from both Public Health and CLBC, SCACL is restricting visitors to all residential facilities completely. This is to reduce the risk of exposure to CV-19 for both residents and staff. This restriction will be in place for fourteen days and will be effective immediately. (The fourteen days is based on the known incubation period of the virus). Family visitation, home visits, and in-house massage will all be suspended. SCACL will evaluate the need to extend the lockdown at the end of the 14-day period. During the visitor-free period, SCACL will do everything they can to maintain virtual contact with family members. We thank you for your understanding and support at this time.

Supplies
Protective supplies are limited throughout the province and we are working to expand our sources, for now, we are equipped.
Groceries are now being ordered online only and we have a dedicate delivery person.

Remote Administrative Services
SCACL has moved to provide administrative services remotely.
The Executive Director (Clarence) will be in the office twice per week to check on the facility and to check for mail – this will be Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Phones are forwarding to the appropriate manager from our main line.
All SCACL admin staff will remain available by phone text and email and ALL are working.

Respite /Homeshare
All respite through SCACL is to cease except for “essential respite” as defined by CLBC
Contact the Community Service Manager (Randy) about your respite provision and he will guide you if it fits the “essential” criteria.
Homeshare supported individuals should remain at home as much as possible – contact Randy if you need support in this area.

Vocational Services
Vocational Services have also moved to remote and essential only.
All Supported Employment jobs have been ceased.
We will talk to each individual and assess the impact of the income wage loss and assess possible wage redress. Staff will talk to our individuals’ employers and advocate to maintain the jobs post-crisis.

Lifeskill/Community Inclusion Supports
Many individuals have ceased service due to the choice of the family
A few staff will provide careful outreach services and will follow strict hygiene practices.

Independent Living
We are developing individualized plans for each person we serve in this program and we will look at housing security, food security, home safety and medical needs for each. Staff that offer supports will do so remotely and in a dedicated one to one drop off service format.

Social Connection and Mental Wellness
To combat social isolation for persons served we are asking staff to encourage the individuals they support to have at least one daily outside contact – by phone, skype, ZOOM or other social media. A dedicated Facebook page for social contact will be set up.

We are going to encourage our Self-Advocate committee to keep in touch and continue to work remotely.

We welcome your questions and concerns, and in order to streamline responses please contact SCACL Managers as follows:

Agency and Provincial Questions, Publicity –  Clarence Li 604-993-0399
Health and Safety, Programming and Operations  – Xerez Haffenden 604-740-1561
Staffing, Schedules and Human Resources  – Laurie Maguire 604-989-7880
Homeshare and Respite  – Randy Younghusband 604-740-2608
Finances and Accounts  – Sonja Hugi 604-885-7455

March 19, 2020

Dear Stakeholders of SCACL:

We have all collectively just experienced one of the most unusual and intense weeks information-wise in perhaps our recent history. Everyone is trying to make sense of it, and we at SCACL are deciphering the messages from provincial sources such as Public Health, Licensing, BC Center for Disease Control, CLBC and others, and are doing our due diligence as a service provider to take appropriate action. Our focus is on:

  • The care and safety of our vulnerable population
  • The health, safety and well-being of our employees
  • Our ability to maintain services
  • Communication and support to stakeholders
  • Maintaining calm and carrying on.

  The SCACL Management Team has been discussing the novel pandemic situation daily and has determined that we will need to go to essential service levels by later this week, however with that being said we will be supporting services as defined below and will do our best to support others who may request it. Some staffing levels may be reduced and we have an emergency staffing plan in place.

Essential Service Definitions:

Critical Service: The most important of services, generally requiring consistent attention 24 hours a day. Services considered essential to the individual’s safety, shelter, nourishment, and medication needs. These services are: Staffed Residential Facilities and Homeshare Provision and both are deemed ESSENTIAL CRITICAL SERVICES

Vital Service: The second most important of services, generally requiring attention/supports within a 24 to 48-hour time frame. These services are: Some Life-skills and One to One Community Inclusion Supports (those whose caregivers would otherwise have a hardship or be unable to provide safe levels of support) Some Independent Living services, (those who are isolated and alone) some Supported Employment services (those who depend on income)

Necessary Service: The third most important of services, generally requiring attention within a once to a few times per week time frame. These services are: Some Independent Living services, (those who live with others) Day Services, Bridges, Supported Employment, Respite

Desired Service: The least important of services, generally requiring attention within a matter of months. Currently, no SCACL services fit this description.

As of 9:00 am Friday, March 20 SCACL will officially start Essential Services, and will be mailing Respite and Homeshare cheques rather than having them picked up at the office to limit visitation.

Those with one to one vital services (see above) will be contacted directly and may have some services modified in location or staffing. We will do our best to meet your needs.

Our Day Program will not be operational per se; however, we may have staff available so please contact us if you will have difficulty supporting someone without our Day Program. We will re-deploy staff to support residential individuals during the day that would otherwise come to Day Services/Bridges.

Our Supported Employment Program will close, however, for those who are dependent on income, we will do our best to maintain jobs and income, and may even pay income in lieu of jobs.

Independent Living will do outreach supports to those who require vital services, however, Supper Club will not operate.

We welcome your questions and concerns, and in order to streamline responses please contact SCACL Managers as follows :

Agency and Provincial Questions, Publicity  –  Clarence Li  604-993-0399

Health and Safety, Programming and Operations  – Xerez Haffenden  604-740-1561

Staffing, Schedules and Human Resources  – Laurie Maguire  604-989-7880

Homeshare and Respite  – Randy Younghusband  604-740-2608

Finances and Accounts  – Sonja Hugi  604-885-7455

The messaging from all levels of public health and government is to stay home as much as possible and we ask you to accommodate this. The province has as of March 17th declared a state of emergency and what this means according to their gov.bc website is as follows:

“Declaring a state of emergency allows the Province, through the minister, to implement any provincial emergency measures required with access to land and human resource assets that may be necessary to prevent, respond to or alleviate the effects of an emergency. This includes securing the critical supply chains to make sure people have access to essential goods and services, and that infrastructure necessary in a response is readily available. The state of emergency is initially in effect for 14 days, once issued, and may be extended or rescinded as necessary.

The state of emergency applies to the whole province and allows federal, provincial and local resources to be delivered in a coordinated effort.”

We are in close contact with our government counterparts and are doing our best to contain the pandemic. We are all in this together and thank you for your ongoing support of SCACL.

March 13, 2020

The Covid 19 virus and subsequent health updates are changing daily and SCACL is required to be prepared for any eventuality.

At this time public health officials still state the risk remains low, However a few new preventative measures have been announced provincially and federally in the last 24 hours.

Recommendations include:

  1. Avoid large gatherings (over 250 people) Many have been cancelled.
  2. Do not travel internationally (travel within Canada is still OK)
  3. If you have travelled internationally (including to the USA), you must self isolate for 14 days upon your return
  4. If you feel unwell or have any cold or flu symptoms you should stay home 
  5. Please increase social distancing opportunities

Social Distancing Definition 

“This means avoiding crowded places and non-essential gatherings, considering shopping or taking public transport in off-peak hours and greeting one another with a wave or elbow instead of a handshake or hug. Where possible, increase social distancing with others to two arms’ length, approximately two metres.”

In addition SCACL may need to go to essential service levels (i.e. close or adjust public programs) as generic services such as our recreation centres may close, or health or licensing may recommend SCACL close day program. If you are a caregiver that accesses Day Program please be prepared by having alternate supports or respite in place. We will work closely with staff, caregivers and stakeholders should these control measures be required of us.

As previously mentioned, our public health experts state that the risk remains LOW and the best thing we can do is to maintain diligent hand washing practices, sneeze into tissue or arms not hands, keep touch point surfaces clean and avoid touching your face.

March 12, 2020

Hello,

We at SCACL are concerned about the lives potentially affected by COVID-19.

SCACL continues to monitor and assess this evolving situation and appropriately respond based on guidance issued by public health authorities. Current guidance from the B.C. Center for Disease Control, Vancouver Coastal Health, Community Care Licensing, Canada Public Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) indicate that the immediate risk of being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 is still relatively low for most people and the current recommendation is for increased hygiene practices and social distancing to prevent the spread of exposure. 

Accurate Information on Covid-19

Accordingly, at this time, SCACL continues to communicate with staff in regards to supplies, staffing, infection control, and emergency planning. We have confidence in the conformance by our staff to SCACL standards for infection prevention and control and other health and safety practices, as well as their emergency preparedness.

SCACL will communicate updates on an ongoing basis and will inform stakeholders if further emergency controls are to be put in place.

Please see the following links for accurate information on Covid-19: