Piper Shores is now over a year into shelter in place measures, and we are pleased to share that we continue to slowly reopen. The following is a message that was shared with our independent residents from Jim Adamowicz, CEO, Leanne Fiet, COO, and Susan Russell, Resident Council President. It is followed by a few of our re-opening measure details that we think will be helpful for the families of residents, friends, and the general public.
As you know from national and state news, we are by no means out of the woods, and we won’t be until a large majority of our general population is fully vaccinated. But there are many positive signs to note and celebrate:
- Due to the diligence and compliance or resident and staff, Piper Shores has not had a single case of COVID-19 among residents. Staff tests, conducted twice monthly, continue to come back negative. These measures that have felt so burdensome at times have paid off in a remarkably successful community response to COVID-19.
- 99.48% of residents, and 83.11% of all staff, have been fully vaccinated. This uptake of the vaccine is among the highest in our peer group and is a testament to the good education provided to all about the importance of being vaccinated.
- The speed of the roll-out of the vaccines is increasing nationally. Maine and New England in general remain prudently cautious about fully opening up but more unrestricted travel within New England has been allowed by the Governor.
- Visitation for nursing homes and assisted living residences has been loosened and redefined (although it is far from wide-open, as inaccurately portrayed by the media.
- Piper Shores continues to adhere to all the requirements, restrictions, and orders of the CDC, CMS, the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, and the Governor’s office. That means we continue to follow the core principles of infection prevention including wearing masks in public, maintaining physical distancing, and practicing good hand hygiene. Unfortunately, It’s not time yet to burn our masks!
The Board Health and Quality of Life Committee and the Resident Council have provided guidance and support to Piper Shores’ Administration in the development of our re-opening measures. In this process we have referred often to the importance of honoring and strengthening our unique Piper Shores culture of being a caring community. We recognize that some may feel we are moving too quickly while others are ready to fully resume life as we used to know it. The balancing act requires us to be thoughtful of our neighbors and calls upon us to do our best to comply with the new protocols and timelines as they are adopted. One thing we have learned is how quickly things have changed and will continue to change. We will adjust our measures accordingly.
Piper Shores Re-Opening Measures
Please note “Fully Vaccinated” means 2 full weeks after a final vaccine shot.
- Effective April 1, packages can no longer be left at the security checkpoint. The small shed will be moved to a location near the Sky Bridge. (See Personal Shoppers/Packages section for updated guidance).
- On May 1, the Piper Road security checkpoint will be discontinued. Until then, hours are 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
- Effective April 1, fully vaccinated visitors will be permitted into the resident’s apartment or cottage. One household per visit is allowed. Children under 18 are allowed as part of that visiting household.
- Before entering the resident’s apartment or cottage, visitors are expected to visit the Holbrook Lobby screening desk.
- Visits must be conducted within the resident’s apartment or cottage. No access to Piper Shores public spaces such as the Great Room, the Founders Room, the Lounges, or the Dining Room is permitted at this time. Outdoor walks are permitted.
- Residents may continue to sign up for scheduled visits in Bigelow Arts Center. The scheduled visit program will end May 1. All visitors must sign in at the Holbrook screening station.
- Unvaccinated visitors from ME, NH, VT, CT, MA and RI will not be required to provide proof of a negative PCR COVID-19 test prior to their visit.
- From now until May 1, visitors from other states than above must provide a copy of a negative PCR COVID-19 test at least 72 hours prior to their scheduled visit, per the Governor’s order.
- From now until May 1, unvaccinated visitors will continue resident visitation in the Bigelow Arts Center. Effective May 1, unvaccinated visitors may participate in in-unit apartment/cottage visits after signing in with the Holbrook screening station.
Pick-Up/Drop-Off of Resident
- Guests may continue to pick-up and/or drop off residents at the main Checkley Entrance or at individual cottages.
- Guests are encouraged to remain in their vehicles at all times and must wear a mask while on the Piper Shores property.
- Guests are not allowed inside the building during pick-up and drop-off.
Outpatient Therapies (Physical, Occupational and Speech
- Effective May 1, fully vaccinated residents may resume outpatient services in the Holbrook rehabilitation department located in the Health Center.
- Beginning March 30, the Main Dining Room has opened for limited in-person dining. Reservations are required. Only residents are allowed. Party size is restricted to four, and ordering meals at the table is available. The occupancy level will be governed by State of Maine requirements.
- Beginning March 30, ordering and limited dining in the Café commenced. The Café continues to support call-in orders at 289-1234, to be picked up by residents.
- Effective May 24, Dining Room to-go meals will no longer be delivered to apartments unless medically indicated. As was the pre-pandemic practice, all residents are to pick up their ‘to-go’ orders in the Main Dining Room.
- 1-hour cleaning appointments remain in place.
- Residents are requested to leave their apartment or cottage during service, or if not possible, wear a mask and maintain physical distancing.
- Beginning April 5, modified deep cleaning service is available.
Transportation (Pharmacy, Medical Appointments)
- Medical transportation continues to be available Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
- Passenger limits will be observed for all Piper Shores transportation services.
- Fee-for-service transportation is available.
- Pharmacy pick-ups will continue until the Monday/Friday shopping trips resume. Many pharmacies currently provide delivery service; please inquire with your pharmacy.
- Monday and Friday shopping trips (grocery store, bank, etc.) are unavailable at this time, but are currently under review.
Personal Shoppers and Packages
- Effective April 1, the package storage shed moved to an alcove near the Holbrook Lobby entrance. This shed will be available to hold packages that had previously been left at the security checkpoint. Residents may pick up their own packages, which must be clearly labeled, between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.,
- Effective April 1 vaccinated personal shoppers are allowed to make deliveries to apartments and cottages after completing the screening process. Unvaccinated personal shoppers must leave items in the package storage shed until May1.
IL Package Room
- The Independent Living Package Room is now re-open.
Personal Service Providers (PSPs)
- The reactivation of Personal Service Providers is currently under careful review.
- PSPs are not permitted at this time.
- Store hours will continue to be 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday and Friday.
- All Piper Shores common areas, corridors, and grounds are considered public areas. As per the State of Maine orders and Piper Shores policy, masks and physical distancing are requested whenever outside one’s home.
- All resident lounges remain open for resident use.
- The Great Room remains open for resident use.
- The number of residents permitted in each room continues to be governed by physical distancing requirements.
- Visitors may not use the common areas, with the exception of outdoor walkways.
Indoor Fitness Classes and Equipment
- Effective April 1, fitness classes in the Cammock Fitness Center resumed on a modified schedule to allow for physical distancing. New protocols are forthcoming.
- Sign-up continues to be required.
- Effective May 1, the fitness equipment that has resided in the IL lounges will be returned to the Cammock Fitness Center.
- The pool remains open for scheduled and requires sign up for 45-minute time slots.
- Water walking and aerobics classes, limited to four per class, continues. Sign up is required.
- Effective April 1, showers are reopened for use, but only by residents using the pool.
- Locker rooms remain open for bathroom and changing.
- Guests may not use the pool or fitness area.
- Effective April 1, the occupancy allowed will increase from two to four members.
- Visitors are not permitted at this time.
- Effective April 1, the raised beds and public garden areas of Piper Shores are open to all residents.
- Visitors are not allowed in the raised-bed garden area at this time.
- Residents are encouraged to continue to wear masks and maintain physical distancing.
- As of April 1, the Ceramics Studio re-opened.
- Sign-up no longer required.
- No more than four residents may utilize a studio at one time.
- Classes are still on hold.
- Residents are requested to wear masks and maintain social distancing.
- Visitors are not permitted at this time.
Hair Salon, Massage Therapy
- Hair salon services are available Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, reservations required.
- Massage therapy services are available beginning the week of April 5.
- Nail technician services are available beginning the week of April 5. The schedule is being considered.
The foregoing reopening measures continue to be informed by public health guidance. There remain certain core principles and best practices that reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. The core principles of infection prevention include:
- Careful and frequent hand hygiene
- Face covering or mask that covers mouth and nose
- Social distancing at least 6-feet between persons
These core principles are consistent with the CDC guidance and should be adhered to whenever possible. Thank you for your ongoing compliance with these important public health measures.