We would like to take a moment and provide some updates and reminders to all of our staff as we continue to navigate through the pandemic. Now, with the outbreak of the Delta variant, we will continue to use our COVID-19 protocol to keep our employees and clients safe at home.
The COVID-19 pandemic remains a significant challenge in California. COVID-19 vaccines are effective in reducing infection and serious disease. At present, 63% of Californians 12 years of age and older are fully vaccinated with an additional 10% partially vaccinated. California is currently experiencing the fastest increase in COVID-19 cases during the entire pandemic with 18.3 new cases per 100,000 people per day, with case rates increasing ninefold within two months. The Delta variant is highly transmissible and may cause more severe illness. In fact, recent data suggests that viral load is roughly 1,000 times higher in people infected with the Delta variant than those infected with the original coronavirus strain, according to a recent study. The Delta variant is currently the most common variant causing new infections in California.
Unvaccinated persons are more likely to get infected and spread the virus, which is transmitted through the air. Most current hospitalizations and deaths are among unvaccinated persons. Thanks to vaccinations and to measures taken since March 2020, California’s health care system is currently able to address the increase in cases and hospitalizations. However, additional statewide facility-directed measures are necessary to protect particularly vulnerable populations and ensure a sufficient, consistent supply of workers in high-risk health care settings.
The California Department of Public Health is now requiring all healthcare workers who work in the Hospital, Skilled Nursing Facility, Congregate Living Health Facility, Adult Day Health Facility, and other healthcare settings to receive the COVID-19 Vaccine. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is now requiring all Registered Home Care Aides to receive the COVID-19 vaccines by September 30, 2021. If you live or work in Los Angeles County, we are asking all staff to submit evidence that you have received the vaccine, or that you qualify for either a medical or religious exemption. If you do not wish to be vaccinated, and you would like to seek an exemption from this mandate, please see the attached forms.
Care To Stay Home is encouraging all clients and employees to receive the COVID-19 Vaccine, but we also understand that the decision to become vaccinated is a deeply personal choice. We encourage each of you to evaluate your own personal circumstances to determine if this vaccine is right for you. We are allowing time off for staff who wish to receive the vaccine and support the personal choice of each employee. Furthermore, we DO NOT and WILL NOT discriminate on the basis of your vaccination status. We continue to respect the privacy of our clients and staff and will protect sensitive health information for both customers and employees. To learn more about the vaccine and to help you decide if this is right for you, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website: The Benefits of Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine.
Continued COVID-19 Monitoring
Every employee should be monitoring themselves and those around them for any signs or symptoms of COVID-19. Should you, or someone you have close contact with, present with any of the signs or symptoms of COVID-19, please call our office immediately.
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
Return to Work Criteria
We are still following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), California Department of Public Health, and CalOSHA guidelines on when an employee may return to work. We want to inform you of the current Return to Work criteria that we are abiding by. Employees may not return to work until these conditions have been met.
- COVID-19 cases with COVID-19 symptoms will not return to work until all the following have occurred:
- At least 24 hours have passed since a fever of 100.4 or higher has resolved without the use of fever-reducing medications.
- COVID-19 symptoms have improved.
- At least 10 days have passed since COVID-19 symptoms first appeared.
- COVID-19 cases who tested positive but never developed COVID-19 symptoms will not return to work until a minimum of 10 days have passed since the date of specimen collection of their first positive COVID-19 test.
- All asymptomatic close contacts (within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) who are not fully vaccinated for COVID-19 may discontinue quarantine after Day 10 from the date of last exposure with or without testing.
Should any client or anyone living at the home where services are being rendered develop any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, we require our staff to wear company-issued Personal Protective Equipment to help keep themselves safe. If you do not have any Personal Protective Equipment or need additional supplies, please contact the office immediately.
If anyone in the home has symptoms of COVID-19 or potential exposure, practice Social Distancing in the home, Wear Masks when staff are working, Hand Wash or Sanitize frequently, and Increase Fresh Air circulation whenever possible. Clients should secure their own Personal Protective Equipment (Gloves, masks, gowns, etc) for use in the home and maintain adequate supplies of household sanitation items (Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer, antibacterial soap, cleaning supplies, etc) to use daily. We also continue to advise our clients and families to keep at least a 30-day supply of medications on hand.
We hope to work together to combat the spread of COVID-19 and to provide as much safety and security as possible to our caregiving team. If you have any questions, suggestions or recommendations on how to improve our efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19, please feel free to contact any member of our management team.
Care To Stay Home Management