Willow Valley Communities' COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information
This section updated 7/1/2020
Beginning at 8:00 AM on Friday, July 3, 2020 until further notice, Willow Valley Communities will suspend guest visits to Residents in our communities. This closure is to protect our Residents and Team Members from the recent resurgence of COVID-19 in the greater community outside of Willow Valley Communities. Please see the Communique dated 06.30.20 for more details.
Willow Valley Communities places top priority on the health, safety, and well-being of Residents, Team Members, guests, and visitors at all times, and certainly during a situation without recent precedent, such as COVID-19. Willow Valley Communities has responded to the threat swiftly, decisively, and deliberately by adhering to, and sometimes exceeding, recommendations and guidance issued and updated frequently by recognized government and health authorities such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the State of Pennsylvania, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and others.
Willow Valley Communities’ COVID-19 Response Team, comprised of members of our Infection Control Committee (including expertise and advisement from Lancaster General Hospital/Penn Medicine), our Medical Director, Willow Valley Communities’ senior leadership, and applicable department heads, meets daily to review the latest information available, and to implement and update policies, best practices, and proactive measures that help mitigate risk to the community. Willow Valley Communities will continue to monitor this situation closely on both the national and local level and in conjunction with authorities, and will modify processes, procedures, and policies as needed. Look for ongoing updates to this website.
Please visit and follow the recommendations of the following websites, which are continually updated by recognized authorities:
COVID-19 Re-Opening Reference Guide
We’re Working to Mitigate the Risk of COVID-19
In chronological order, actions that we have taken since the advent of this pandemic include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Willow Valley Communities introduced Grocery Deliver Service for Residents.
- WVC revised traffic patterns on both campuses to increase security and further limit community access to only authorized persons.
- Willow Valley Communities instituted a screening requirement policy for any Resident leaving WVC property for any reason without exception. It requires that upon return to campus, all cars are routed through the screening stations, where a masked Team Member will approach the car and take a forehead temperature utilizing an infrared thermometer and ask screening questions of the driver and passengers.
- WVC instituted a requirement to wear a mask in order to ride on the WVC shuttle bus.
- WVC advised Residents that visiting other Residents is disallowed, including prohibiting eating a meal at your neighbors, playing cards or games at your neighbors or in common areas; Residents should only be eating with someone if they actually live in your residence.
- Willow Valley Communities emphasized that Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s “Stay at Home” mandate, which orders all individuals currently living within the state of PA to shelter at their place of residence, applies to Residents of WVC. Additionally, any public or private gatherings of any number of Residents occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
- WVC announced that its leaders were doing their part to keep each other safe by avoiding unnecessary in person meetings whenever possible. WVC advised that members of its COVID-19 Response Team, which assembles daily, are meeting “virtually” from their own offices via online conferencing software.
- WVC reminded Residents of PA’s Shelter in Place Order, emphasizing that all Residents need to: remain at home, except for essential trips; minimize travel on our campus and in our buildings; follow proper social distancing guidelines; and refrain from having meals with neighbors or playing cards/games in close proximity to other Residents.
- Willow Valley Communities reminded Residents to wear their name tags in an effort to manage individuals who should not be on campus and in the buildings. WVC announced that Residents who return back to campus from a local drive to the grocery store or another essential stop without their name tag worn visibly will be required to be screened.
- WVC reminded Residents to practice social distancing by staying 6 feet apart both while waiting to enter a dining venue as well as while in line to access food items.
- WVC announced that Resident compliance with the organization’s announced COVID-19 policies and procedures is strictly required. WVC stated that it reserves the right to take action with violators that includes up to potentially terminating a Resident’s Agreement.
- Willow Valley Communities implements a Tracking Resident Movement policy, strongly encouraging them to limit outings to truly necessary locations (such as grocery stores, pharmacies and medical appointments) and strongly discouraging travel. The policy requires that Residents will need to self-isolate for 14 days if certain conditions are met. These include travel anywhere outside of Lancaster County; being under investigation for COVID-19; testing positive for COVID-19; or experiencing respiratory illness symptoms such as shortness of breath, fever, cough, or sore throat.
- WVC announced that it has postponed or closed additional programs, events, and venues in accordance with social distancing guidelines.
- WVC introduced a new question and answer (Q&A) function on its COVID-19 web page (www.willowvalleycommunities.org/coronavirus), as the place for Residents, family members, and Team Members to get answers to Coronavirus questions that relate to our community.
- WVC announced steps it was taking to secure and limit access by no longer permitting nearby neighbors to our community, pedestrians, and others who are not affiliated with Willow Valley Communities (e.g., kids fishing, skate boarding, riding bikes, couples with babies in strollers, etc.) on either WVC campus.
- Willow Valley Communities reiterated of Pennsylvania Governor Wolf’s strong recommendation to practice social distancing (6 feet from others) and the Governor’s request for all Pennsylvanians to stay home.
- Willow Valley Communities announced that beginning Monday, March 23, 2020, all non-Resident individuals (including ALL Team Members, vendors, and contractors) who have access to our buildings will be screened daily at one of two designated checkpoints. At these checkpoints—one on the Manor campus and one on the Lakes campus—a strict screening process that includes a series of questions and a temperature check will be conducted. The checkpoints will be operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Willow Valley Communities announced significant changes to its Culinary Services: Effective starting with the Breakfast Meal on Friday, March 20th, (in-house) sit down dining is discontinued at all locations. Take-out only meals will be available.
- WVC reinforced that its no visitor policy applies to Residents who live in an “outer building,” such as a villa or townhome.
- WVC reminded Residents in Independent Living that they are permitted to leave campus, but are strongly encouraged to limit outings to necessary trips (such as grocery stores, pharmacies and medical appointments).
- WVC announced that primary elections polling will not be held on-site; Residents were encouraged to complete an absentee ballot.
- WVC emphasized that its visitor closure policy prohibits guests for Easter.
- Willow Valley Communities cancelled group activities and travel through April 30, 2020. These include art classes, fitness classes, vespers, afternoon tea, Volunteer Luncheons, Easter Sunrise Service, and most group programing.
- WVC announced that its Cultural Center and Clubhouse remain open to Residents, but guests are no longer permitted.
- Additional restrictive measures were implemented for supportive living environments: Visitor restrictions included spouses who reside in Independent Living. Supportive Living Residents must remain within Willow Valley Communities’ Supportive Living environment.
- Willow Valley Communities was closed to visitors in all areas on both campuses.
- WVC ordered additional supplies (masks, culinary ‘to go’ supplies, etc.).
- WVC increased Team Member education for protocols regarding proper hand washing techniques, proper use of gloves, review of PPE equipment, etc.
- WVC added handwashing instruction signage throughout the community, as well as, hand sanitizer at our dining rooms.
- WVC implemented enhanced housekeeping measures and frequency in all public areas. Also, WVC implemented daily cleaning/wiping down of the inside of the WVC buses/vans; increased frequency of sanitizing surfaces and switching out communal utensils in culinary; and additional cleaning and wiping down of all fitness areas.
- WVC announced limited access through the Upper Level of the Cultural Center: The main doors will allow access to daily events beginning a half hour prior to the start of each program.
- WVC postponed March and April Cash and Carry Sales.
- WVC announced continued evaluation of March and April events scheduled at all of our locations/venues for potential cancellation.
- WVC postponed all WVC-sponsored travel and encouraged Residents to limit their own travel plans when possible.
- Reporting guidelines and work restrictions for Team Members has been communicated.
- WVC implemented specific protocols for screening, monitoring, and restricting Resident activity based on areas of travel and reporting of certain illness symptoms.
- WVC implemented specific, community-wide protocols for screening and restricting visitors coming into our buildings. WVC added signage at all exit/entrance doors asking all visitors to register at the Concierge Desk. The screening process applied to guests of Residents, entertainers, volunteers, vendors and contractors, other service providers such as Hospice, etc. WVC also announced the criteria under which the visitor would not be permitted to enter the building.
- Willow Valley Communities activated a special COVID-19 web page to serve as central hub of information for Residents, Team Members, and families.
- Provided Residents with instructions they should follow to help mitigate risk. These included staying home if having certain illness symptoms; contacting their healthcare practitioner and Resident Nursing office if ill; avoiding close contact with people who are sick; avoiding certain public areas; washing hands often with soap and water; avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth; covering one’s mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
- WVC requested that Residents minimize outside guests coming to the community.
- Willow Valley Communities described a list of proactive steps that the organization has taken, including gathering additional supplies, monitoring guests as they sign in and Residents who have traveled out of the country, reviewing activities and travel programs, and educating Team Members of needed information related to the COVID-19.
- WVC requested that Residents and/or Team Members contact the Resident Nursing office to report past travel, future travel plans, specific symptoms, and contact with someone who recently visited a high risk area.
- WVC shared information about the illness and the steps that WVC and its Residents can take to decrease the risk of the virus occurring on the campuses. WVC also provided useful website URLs for obtaining updated, relevant information.
- Willow Valley Communities (WVC) announced that special COVID-19 Response Team, including members of its Leadership Team, Infection Control Committee, and its Medical Director had met, and will continue to meet as needed, to review policies, best practices, and proactive measures that should be taken to help mitigate risk to the Community.
View Resident Updates
This section updated 7/9/2020
Recognition of Our Team Members
in handling the COVID-19 situation.”
We are blessed."
but every one of the residents honor the commitment of the 1400 Team Members who make
our lives the best it can be under the circumstances."