Visit this website daily for the latest information that AHCA has to share about COVID-19. As concerns arise with the emerging coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, we are working with our state partners, including Arkansas Department of Health and Arkansas Department of Human Services to ensure nursing centers receive necessary guidance to prevent the spread of this disease.
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ALERT: VISITORS PROHIBITED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
Revised March 13, 2020
"Effective immediately, the Arkansas Department of Health directs all long-term care facilities to prohibit all visitation until further notice unless medically necessary or by law enforcement or other emergency personnel, a representative from the Arkansas Department of Health, a representative from the Arkansas Department of Human Services Office of Long-term Care, or a representative from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services."
"This prohibition shall begin on March 13, 2020, and remain in effect until further notice."
Please note: A long-term care facility is defined by section 20-10-101(10) of the Arkansas Code and includes nursing homes, residential care facilities, and assisted living facilities.
ALERT: Suspension of Rules for the Arkansas Long-Term Care Facility Nursing Assistant Training Program
Revised April 13, 2020
As authorized by the Governor's Executive Order 20-06 and Order 20-16, regarding the public health emergency concerning COVID-19, and power delegated to the Governor by A.C.A. § 12-75-114, the following agency rules are identified as preventing, hindering, or delaying the agency's ability to render maximum assistance to the citizens of this state and are hereby suspended for the duration of the declared public health emergency, unless otherwise state:
- Sections IV, VII(A)(3), and VII(B), are suspended to the extent that they: (1) Require persons acting as nursing assistants to pass an examination, or (2) Prohibit facilities from employing individuals acting as a nursing assistant for more than 120 days unless the individual passes an examination.
- Section IV.B.5 is suspended to the extent that it limits in-class instruction to one (1) instructor for every 24 students.
Prometric has decided to extend the suspension of Nurse Aide testing in the U.S. until May 1st. Prometric will have a better understanding if, and where, testing can resume for all, or select programs, closer to April 30th. Visit Prometric's website for updates.
Use this Model Competency Checklist to document the competency of nursing assistants who are not able to complete their examination within 120 days. This checklist from DHS is based on the current Nursing Assistant Training Program curriculum for all of the knowledge and skills that CNAs would need to have to meet the needs of facility residents under that curriculum.
Documenting competency is required because even though rules relating to nursing assistant examination requirements have been temporarily suspended during this public health emergency, both state and federal rules still require that all nursing assistants become "competent" after 120 days. This means that facilities must still ensure that nursing assistants are able to demonstrate competency in skills and techniques necessary to care for residents' needs.
- AHCA Letter to Media Partners (Mar. 22, 2020)
- Arkansas Health Care Association Official Statement (Mar. 20, 2020)
- Arkansas Health Care Association Announces Stringent Visitor Limitations (Mar. 14, 2020)
- COVID-19 Focused Survey - Infection Control Survey Tool
- Model Competency Checklist for Nursing Assistant Training
- Link to PASRR Guidance and Rule Suspensions
- LTSS Direct Care Statement of Intent/Point of Contact Form
- Guidance on LTSS Direct Care Worker Payment
- Direct Care Worker Payment Request Form - UPDATED
- Guidance on LTSS Indirect Care Worker Payment
- Indirect Care Worker Payment Request Form - UPDATED
- FAQs - UPDATED 5/11/2020
- CMP Grant Application for Communicative Devices
- Link to Guidance for Background Checks for Employees of LTC Facilities During COVID-19 Outbreak
- DHS Rule Suspensions during COVID-19
- ADH COVID-19 Status Updates - STATEWIDE MAP
- ADH Guidance for Reducing Spread on COVID-19 in LTC Facilities (April 15, 2020)
- ADH Return to Work Guidance for COVID-19 Infected/Exposed Healthcare Personnel
- ADH Guidance for Limiting the Transmission of COVID-19 for LTC Facility (Revised) (Mar. 13, 2020)
- ADH Guidance for Prevention and Management of COVID-19 in LTC Facilities (Mar. 23, 2020)
- Guidelines for Discontinuation of Isolation Precautions in Patients with COVID-19 Infection (Mar. 19, 2020)
- Extended Use and Limited Reuse of Disposable Facemasks, Respirators, and Protective Eyewear (Mar. 19, 2020)
- ADH Nursing Home Infection Prevention Assessment Tool for COVID-19
- On-Demand Webinars Now Available
- Infection Prevention and Control Assessment Tool for LTC Facilities
- Overview of COVID-19
- Health Care Facility Resources
- Resources for Health Care Facilities
- Health Care Infection Control Guidelines
- Strategies for Optimizing Supply of N95 Respirators
- Clinical Care Guidance
- Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) Calls & Webinars
- Implementing Home Care of People Not Requiring Hospitalization
- Disposition of Non-Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19
- Prevention Resources
- Reporting Resources
- CMS Memo - Interim Final Rule Updating Requirements for Notification of Confirmed and Suspected COVID-19 Cases Among Residents and Staff in Nursing Homes (May 6, 2020) Ref: QSO-20-29-NH
- CMS Memo - Prioritization of Survey Activities (Mar. 23, 2020) Ref: QSO-20-20-All
- Revised CMS Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Nursing Homes (Mar. 13, 2020)
- May 11th Letter from CMS Administrator, Seema Verma
Department of Labor
Wright Lindsey Jennings Resources
- 4.3.2020 Webinar Slides
- Click here to listen to a recording of the 4.3.2020 webinar
- DOL FFCRA Poster
- Paycheck Protection Program & Other Business Support
- Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) Summary
- Question: As an employer, how do I know if my business is under the 500-employee threshold and therefore must provide paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave?
- You have fewer than 500 employees if, at the time your employee's leave is to be taken, you employ fewer than 500 full-time and part-time employees within the United States, which includes any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, or any Territory or possession of the United States. In making this determination, you should include employees on leave; temporary employees who are jointly employed by you and another employer (regardless of whether the jointly-employed employees are maintained on only your another employer's payroll); and day laborers supplied by a temporary agency (regardless of whether you are the temporary agency or the client firm if there is a continuing employment relationship). Workers who are independent contractors under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), rather than employees, are not considered employees for purposes of the 500-employee threshold.
- Typically, a corporation (including its separate establishments or divisions) is considered to be a single employer and its employees must each be counted towards the 500-employee threshold. Where a corporation has an ownership interest in another corporation, the two corporations are separate employers unless they are joint employers under the FLSA with respect to certain employees. If two entities are found to be joint employers, all of their common employees must be counted in determining whether paid sick leave must be provided under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and expanded family and medical leave must be provided under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act.
- In general, two or more entities are separate employers unless they meet the integrated employer test under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA). If two entities are an integrated employer under the FMLA, then employees of all entities making up the integrated employer will be counted in determining employer coverage for purposes of paid sick leave under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and expanded family and medical leave under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act.
- Assisted Living Communities: Taking Reasonable Efforts to Prevent COVID-19
- Guidance on Communal Dining
- Guidance on Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of PPE (AHCA/NCAL Update #12 (Mar. 18, 2020))
- Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention Concerning COVID-19: FAQs and Considerations for Patient Triage, Placement and Hospital Discharge (Mar. 4, 2020)
- Guidelines for Environmental Infection Control in Health-Care Facilities
- Guidelines for Isolation Precautions
- Guidance for Therapy Personnel
- Extended Use and Limited Reuse of Disposable Facemasks, Respirators, and Protective Eyewear (Mar. 19, 2020)
- Guidance for SNFs on Three-Day Hospital Stay (Mar. 19, 2020)
- AHCA Interim Guidance: SNFs Accepting Admissions from Hospitals During COVID-19 Pandemic (Mar. 20, 2020)
- Guidelines for Residents' Personal Laundry During COVID-19 (Mar. 20, 2020)
Well-Being of Residents & Staff
- Activity Director Resources
- Tips for Keeping Residents Engaged
- Well-Being Model Guidance for Residents
- Psychosocial Health Screen of Residents
- Well-Being Tips for Healthcare Workers to Reduce Stress and Improve Self-Care During the COVID-19 Outbreak
- Review infection prevention and control policies and procedures for droplet precautions among residents and staff.
- Prepare Staff
- See sample letter to employees.
- It's important that any staff who are sick stay home. CDC has detailed guidance on this.
- Remind staff of hand hygiene and proper use of PPE.
- Inform housekeeping staff and other impacted staff about the importance of proper cleaning. See our sample handout in English or Spanish.
- Restrict all non-essential individuals from visiting your facility for the time being.
- Explain this to residents' family members and friends.
- Set up/help facilitate alternative forms of communication for residents: video, phone, or other methods.
- Screen individuals who need to enter the building - including staff - for possible exposure to COVID-19. Use this revised screening toolkit and log.
- Any individual who checks YES to any questions on the screening tool should not be permitted to enter the facility.
- Any individuals that is permitted to enter should wash their hands and use hand sanitizer upon entrance and throughout their stay.
- Use this template log for personnel to track employees & temps coming into the facility.
- Restrict group activities within and outside the building.
- Cancel trips into the community at-large.
- Restrict group activities and communal dining within the facility.
- Cancel activities with outside volunteers (e.g., school bands/choirs, pet therapists).
- Take stock of your PPE. Complete our PPE Survey.
- Work to preserve your supply by adjusting your practice to conduct multiple activities per visit to an infected patient's room (see CDC guidance for optimizing PPE supply).
- Communicate, communicate, communicate
- Make sure you have current emergency contact information for family members and loved ones.
- Keep residents and family members informed about efforts you're taking and any new developments.
- Contact Rachel Bunch or Cat Hamilton at the Arkansas Health Care Association if you receive media inquiries.
If a staff member shows symptoms: Have them go home immediately.
If a resident shows symptoms: Implement droplet precaution procedure, move them to an isolated room, and contact your Medical Director, ADH, and AHCA.
Visitor / Staff Screenings
- The CDC has updated their list of symptoms.
- AHCA/NCAL issued a revised screening toolkit that facilities can use.
- Sample daily log for screening personnel (Excel and PDF)
- N95 Respirators
- Interim Clinical Guidance for Management of Patients with Confirmed Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
- Interim Infection Prevention and Control Requirements for Patients with Suspected or Confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Healthcare Settings
- Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of N95 Respirators
- Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of N95 Respirators: Contingency Capacity Strategies
- Checklist for Healthcare Facilities: Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of N95 Respirators during the COVID-19 Response
- When N95 Supplies are Running Low: Personal Protective Equipment and Respiratory Protection (see page 3)
- Recommended Guidance for Extended Use and Limited Reuse of N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators in Healthcare Settings
- N95 Mask Course
- This course covers the types of face masks in the healthcare setting, identifies features of N95 masks, and strategies for use of these masks.
- Video: Respirator Fit Testing from OSHA
- Video: How to Use a Filtering Facepiece Respirator
- AHCA Infection Procedures Activated/Visitor Poster
- CDC Infographic: Stop the Spread of Germs
- CDC Infographic: Airborne Precautions (English)
- CDC Infographic: Airborne Precautions (Spanish)
- CDC Infographic: Droplet Precautions (English)
- CDC Infographic: Droplet Precautions (Spanish)
- CDC Infographic: Symptoms of COVID (English)
- CDC Infographic: Symptoms of COVID (Spanish)
- CDC Infographic: Sick with 2019 nCoV Fact Sheet (English)
- CDC Infographic: Sick with 2019 nCoV Fact Sheet (Spanish)
- CDC Infographic: Contact Precautions (English)
- CDC Infographic: Contact Precautions (Spanish)
- PAHO Infographic: Coronavirus Disease 2019
- Pathway Health Resources - COVID-19 Resources including policies & procedures, leadership checklists, preparation and response strategies. Click to Download.
- Ecolab Resources - COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfection. Click to View.
- Long-Term Care Nursing Homes Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit