Skilled Nursing & Senior Living COVID-19 Response & Resource Guide

Skilled Nursing & Senior Living COVID-19 Response & Resource Guide

The news about the spread of the new disease, COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and the risks it poses for those who become infected is concerning to us all. Ensuring residents are cared for in a safe and healthy environment is a priority for all senior care and living communities. To assist our clients, managed communities, and other providers in preparing for and responding to COVID-19, Health Dimensions Group has created a Skilled Nursing & Senior Living COVID-19 Response & Resource Guide which is available for your download and use.

Close Monitoring & Implementation of CMS, CDC, State & Trade Association Guidance


Development of Detailed Surveillance & Preparedness Plan

  • Emergency preparedness plans
  • Visitor restrictions & screening
  • Community signage
  • Employee & provider screening & illness tracking
  • Staff education & auditing
  • Resident illness tracking & symptom screening & response
  • PPE & supply management
  • Review & updating (if necessary) policies & procedures around infection control
  • Intensified plant operations & housekeeping activities



  • Develop written communication for visitors, families, residents, staff & vendors
  • Develop clear signage for building entries
  • Share government notices & flyers with all audiences
  • Update websites & social media sites
  • Update phone & voice messages
  • Utilize other tools like auto text & call software to quickly contact staff & families
  • Develop media statements & train local staff on media interaction
  • Develop communication plan with key audiences delineated


Workforce Planning & Support

  • Tracking of State & Federal programs to support workforce, including leave policies & exclusions
  • Updating recruiting & job postings to recruit hospitality workers
  • Utilizing paid & organic social media to support recruiting
  • Defined training processes to train and competency test new employees quickly
  • Offer support for childcare, sick leave, & employee support services
  • Interview processes to include web meetings to continue to recruit while adhering to visitor restrictions
  • Development of contingency staffing plan
  • Identify menu & food ordering guide for staffing crisis
  • Track state-level waivers and guidelines on staff screening and trainer
  • Review new paid leave requirements and eligibility


Financial Resource Review

  • Review current & projected cash positions of communities
  • Explore loan, line and government resources for COVID-19 expense
  • Work with vendors on payment terms
  • Identify backup personnel for billing & collections to ensure stable cash flow
  • Proactively communicate with lenders who are seeking updates on assets

Survey Readiness

  • Review existing infection control policies, procedures & tracking
  • Have all COVID-19 specific training & tools implemented
  • Document COVID-19 response, training & tracking
  • Review updated CMS survey guidelines


COVID-19 Positive Case Management

  • State Health Department collaboration on testing and positive case management
  • PPE requirements & room signage
  • Review hospital transfer documents & procedures
  • Care-in-place management plan
  • Ongoing education on precautions
  • Outbreak control including plan for COVID-19 treatment area and dedicated staff


Daily Education & Discussion

  • Frequent review & dissemination of new guidelines & surveillance to communities
  • Daily site leadership training
  • Open discussion of challenges between communities on daily call
  • On-site leadership & staff huddles
  • Education & auditing of infection control policies & PPE utilization

Supplies & PPE Planning

  • Collaborate with suppliers on ordering & shipping timelines
  • Partner with hospitals & health coalitions for critical supplies if needed
  • Attend supplier education to understand ordering processes & allotments
  • Monitoring & storing of supplies for loss prevention
  • Staying current with PPE guidance on use


Resident Life

  • Utilization of technology for e-visits – tablets, tools & training
  • In-room & hallway activities like overhead speaker games & interaction
  • Encourage community at large to send cards, letters, puzzle books, books, & other small gifts
  • 1:1 activities with social distancing


Rapid Response Team

  • Identify a team (not currently working in communities) to be trained to provide direct care, housekeeping & dining services in the case of an outbreak & staffing shortages
  • Train & competency test this team to provide side-by-side support to on-site teams
  • Reduce exposure risk of this team by utilizing a remote workforce & social distancing to ensure they are healthy if team is deployed

Tracking of Policy Changes

  • 3 Day stay Medicare waivers
  • LTACH transfers
  • MDS timing changes
  • Medicare appeals


Contact Us

If you have any questions, or HDG can assist you in your preparedness or response, please contact us at or 763.537.5700.

To download a PDF of the Skilled Nursing & Senior Living COVID-19 Response & Resource Guide, click here.


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