We’re so pleased to be opening our New Jersey communities slowly and safely. In accordance with the state Department of Health, we’re making this outbreak policy available online for those who wish to review it. We take the well-being of our residents and staff very seriously, and we’re happy to share our plan with you.

For any urgent matters or concerns, we ask that you contact the community directly and ask to speak with a supervisor. A team member will gladly assist you.

Englewood, NJ: 201.540.4444

Somerset, NJ: 732.595.5975

Wayne, NJ: 973.987.3600

Woodcliff Lake, NJ: 201.505.9500

The Bristal’s Outbreak Policy:

All reasonable attempts will be made to minimize and prevent the continued spread of a viral or bacterial outbreak.

Definition of Outbreak: An “outbreak” is the occurrence of more cases of a disease/illness than normally expected over a given period of time.

Procedure:

The Resident Services Director (RSD)/Registered Nurse (RN) or designee will:

  • Notify the Executive Director (ED) immediately when a possible outbreak is identified.
  • Monitor each resident for signs and symptoms of the outbreak daily.
  • Begin tracking the affected residents utilizing the appropriate Line List, either GI or Respiratory line list.
  • Place affected residents on appropriate infection control precautions.
  • Ensure adequate supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
  • Notify department heads and staff of affected residents and precautions to be used.
  • Provide in-service regarding infection control measures including hand washing and proper use of PPE (follow Infection Control – PPE Personal Protective Equipment policy).
  • Request all ill residents remain in their rooms until medically cleared. Residents who are unable to follow directions to remain in their rooms will be cohorted with other residents who are affected.
  • Ensure residents’ needs are met and monitor residents.
  • Notify the physicians and families of those residents affected.
  • Obtain prescriptions for any applicable laboratory testing and arrange for testing to take place.
  • Ensure external surfaces of medication carts are sanitized after use.

The Executive Director or designee will:

  • Notify the Vice President of Clinical Services – NJ.
  • Immediately contact the LHD to report a suspected or confirmed outbreak.
  • Notify the New Jersey Division of Health Facilities Evaluation and Licensing. (This applies to Assisted Living Facilities, Assisted Living Programs, Comprehensive Personal Care Homes, Residential Health Care Facilities, and Adult and Pediatric Day Health Services Facilities ONLY.)
  • When LHD staff cannot be reached, the facility shall make the report directly to NJDOH who will then contact the LHD. The LHD shall: Immediately notify NJDOH.
  • Coordinate the process to minimize outbreak including ensuring:
    – All staff are informed of the outbreak and their specific role which will include designating staff to each resident cohort and revising staffing as necessary to meet the needs of the residents.
    – Identification of point person for screening staff reporting to work to determine if they have experienced any symptoms of illness.
    – Staff identified as symptomatic are excluded from work until free of symptoms for 72 hours or as directed by the CDC or NJ DOH Directives.
    – All staff are properly in-serviced regarding infection control measures (see RSD section).
    – Ensure all staff has access to and are using PPE as directed.
    – Proper infection control processes are followed by all departments.
    – All group social and therapy activities have been discontinued.
    – Meal service to residents’ rooms for affected residents; entire community if widespread.
    – Minimize sharing of staff between Reflections and AL.
  • Limit visitors, if possible or as directed by the NJ DOH.
  • Ensure that visitors be screened for symptoms of illness upon arrival. If the visitor shows or reports symptoms of illness, they will be asked to refrain from visiting and the Executive Director or designee will be notified.
  • Review with the Regional Director of Operations the possibility of postponing new move-ins and community visits.
  • A sign will be posted at the concierge desk reminding individuals not to visit if they are not feeling well as well as reviewing respiratory hygiene and handwashing practices – Cover Your Cough Handwashing Poster; Visitor Poster.
  • Via letters, email blasts, postings and website posts, communicate with residents and resident representatives regarding the steps taken to protect residents including actions implemented to prevent or reduce the risk of transmission, the modifications to normal operations and a phone number to contact for urgent calls or complaints.
  • Via letters and/or emails at least weekly, in particular during curtailed visitation, provide residents and resident representatives cumulative updates.
  • Ensure The Bristal website includes the outbreak plan, updated as needed, as well as the phone number for urgent calls or complaints.
  • Should the outbreak result in staffing shortages, the ED will immediately notify the VP of Clinical Services – NJ as well as the Regional Director of Operations and the Emergency Contingency Staffing Plan will be reviewed and implemented as needed.

The Director of Housekeeping or designee will ensure:

  • Common and resident areas are sanitized at least twice daily with a disinfectant effective against Norovirus (Norovirus Cleaning & Disinfection policy).
    – Common and resident areas include dining areas, restrooms, activity rooms, libraries, lobbies, computer rooms, staff break rooms, bistro, bedrooms.
    – Particular emphasis is given to “high touch” surfaces such as:
    • Bathroom Surfaces;
    • Doorknobs & Handles;
    • Furniture Handles;
    • Recreation Equipment;
    • Light Switch Plates;
    • Telephones;
    • Computer & Keyboards;
    • Railings;
    • Elevator Buttons;
    • Tables & Chairs;
    • Mailboxes;
    • Wheelchairs & Walkers;
    • Remote Controls
  • Use disposable cloths and mops whenever possible.
  • Laundering of cleaning supplies according to Norovirus and Disinfection policy.
  • Cleaning carts and equipment are sanitized after use in contaminated areas.
  • Waste and laundry are transported safely in closed bags/containers.
  • Laundering of contaminated items separately with staff following precautions when handling contaminated laundry.

The Director Food Services or designee will ensure:

  • The use of gloves for all kitchen staff during outbreak.
  • Discontinuation of service in the bistro including coffee/tea, beverages, food, etc. and other self-service areas.
  • When group meals are continued during the outbreak, that high touch services in the dining room (including menus) are stringently cleaned after each meal service.
  • Staff wear gloves, protect clothing and use disposable cleaning supplies when possible when cleaning kitchen/food service area.
  • When meals are served in rooms, well residents are served first.
  • Delivery carts are cleaned and disinfected after use.
  • The use of only single service, disposable utensils, plates, cups, etc.
  • Waste from meals and used disposable items are discarded in the room and not returned to the kitchen.
  • Discontinuation of self-service beverages in employee lounge as well as removal of shared condiment containers, i.e. salt and pepper shakers.

The Recreation Director or designee will ensure:

  • Programs continue to be developed to meet the psychosocial needs of the residents including but not limited to virtual video visits and/or telephone calls with staff assistance.
  • Implementation of the internal policy and procedure for Activities – New Resident Virtual Program and Activities – Resident Engagement.

Additional information:
https://www.nj.gov/health/cd/documents/topics/outbreaks/gi_ltc.pdf