Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information
The Good Samaritan Society Media Relations team provides public relations services to working members of the media.
Journalists should always work with a member of our media relations team to coordinate interviews, photos and/or video.
The Good Samaritan Society is committed to the health of our members, our employees and the communities we serve. We are monitoring the rapidly changing events related to COVID-19. We will provide information to the public during this outbreak across the globe.
This is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation. The risk may change daily. The Good Samaritan Society is partnering with health officials to monitor and evaluate this situation. The latest updates are available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 website.
To learn more about how the Good Samaritan Society is preparing for this new virus strain, view our available resources.
What is the novel (new) COVID-19?
- The federal government, through CDC, is responding to an outbreak of respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus.
- The disease was first detected in Wuhan City in the Hubei Province of China. It has now been found in many other locations around the world, including the United States.
- The virus has been named “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated “COVID-19”).
How does the virus spread?
The first infections were linked to a live animal market where a person came into contact with an infected animal. The virus is now spreading from person to person around the world.
The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading rapidly in other communities, as noted by the CDC.
“Community spread” means a high number of people have been infected with the virus in a single area. The infected people do not how or where they contracted the disease.
What are symptoms of the COVID-19?
Symptoms of the COVID-19 include:
- Shortness of breath
What should I do if I have symptoms or think I’ve been exposed to the virus?
If you have symptoms or have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus:
- If your symptoms are not severe, stay home rather than go to the doctor’s office and risk spreading the virus to other people.
- If you are infected or showing any of the symptoms, do not go to work and do not travel. Call your doctor as soon as possible.
- If you develop symptoms while at work, tell your manager and any HR representative immediately, then leave work if you are able and can travel safely without infecting others. Call your doctor as soon as possible.
- If you have symptoms and/or could have been exposed to the virus, call ahead to your doctor’s office before you go in for an appointment to report:
- Your symptoms
- Recent travels
- Possible exposures
- You must call in any symptoms, travels and exposures for:
- Anyone under 5 or over 65 years old
- Pregnant women
- People with a chronic medical condition or compromised immune system
- People with any respiratory illness symptoms should not visit family and friends in the hospital or nursing home. These places may now have strict visitor restrictions to protect these vulnerable populations
How do I protect myself and my family?
- The immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low for the general public, who are very unlikely to have been exposed to this virus at this time.
- Everyone, whether at home and at work, follow good respiratory and hand hygiene practices at all times:
- Wash your hands with soap and water (for at least 20 seconds) and use alcohol-based hand sanitizer (with at least 60%-95% alcohol).
- Do not have any close contact with people who are known to be sick (for example, do not shake hands with any person who is coughing or sneezing).
- Regularly monitor yourself for signs of fever or other symptoms.
- Routinely clean all frequently touched surfaces in the home and workplace such as, countertops, sinks, seating, workstations and doorknobs.
- Facemasks are not necessary for healthy members of the general public. The CDC does not recommend people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19. A facemask should be used by:
- People who have COVID-19 and are showing symptoms and health care workers who are caring for these patients.
Will you continue to take new admissions in your skilled nursing facilities and post-acute/rehab?
Yes, we will continue to take new admissions. Each new resident will be carefully screened before allowing the resident to enter the facility. Any symptomatic residents will be isolated upon entry, if permitted in.
Will you continue to move new residents into senior/assisted living and affordable housing apartments?
Yes, we will continue to allow new residents to move into our buildings. New residents will be encouraged to limit the number of friends or family helping them move in. New residents will be screened for symptoms and travel as soon as they enter the building.
How are you protecting my loved one and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the facility?
We are taking extra precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic, which we know can be life-threatening for older adults in our care. We are closely following CDC infection control protocols.
- We are practicing what we preach, like good hand washing hygiene and routine cleaning of shared surfaces.
- If employees are sick, they are staying home. They are also screened per the guidelines above.
- We are closely monitoring residents for signs of illness. If your loved one becomes ill, rest assured, we'll notify you immediately.
- We are keeping sick residents away from healthy residents.
- Wherever possible, we are delivering meals in-room to residents and if we use common spaces, we are keeping the residents at least six feet apart.
Can I take my loved one home?
You are free to take your loved one home if you choose, but it will be considered a discharge as we've stopped allowing routine outings to limit the residents' exposure risk. If you choose to take your loved one home, we recommend having a care plan in place so they stay safe and healthy.
What if a resident needs to see the doctor?
Your loved one will still be taken to their medically necessary appointments and screened up reentry.
What is Send a Note and how do I do that?
The Good Samaritan Society offers a free, online tool that allows users to send a note to a particular resident and/or facility. Even if you don't know a specific resident, you may indicate "any resident" in the name of the resident field. We'll make sure your message is delivered to someone who would love to receive a note. To participate, visit this page. This service is especially important during times with visitor restrictions. If you have a moment, please send a note – it will brighten someone's day.
If I send a care package, is there a chance it can bring the virus into the building?
At this point, health officials are saying that there is little to no risk of spreading the virus through objects like this. It's always good to take precautions, though, so feel free to wipe down or disinfect objects before you send them to your loved ones. You can find physical addresses on our website www.good-sam.com to send packages and letters.