The Pinnacle of Greenville, an assistant living and memory care facility, has a perfect record in its battle against COVID-19.
None of the more than 30 elderly members living at the healthcare center have contracted the coronavirus, and executive director Ann Macvaugh attributes this not only to good fortune but also to the early diligence of her staff for keeping her elderly community safe.
“We have been very blessed, but we are always checking and double checking to make sure our residents are safe,” Macvaugh said. “We are constantly washing our hands and taking temperatures of every resident.”
According to the Mississippi State Department of Health, as of May 17, there were 98 current coronavirus outbreaks in longterm care facilities in the state (one or more cases among staff or residents counts as an outbreak). In Washington County, there have been five coronavirus cases in long term facilities and one death. It is unclear what facility or facilities these cases have occurred in.
In total, there have been 123 coronavirus cases reported in Washington County with four deaths.
At Pinnacle, meanwhile, attention to safety has been happening since the coronavirus pandemic began, Macvaugh said.
The facilities house keeping staff completely sanitizes the building several times a day. Each night, staff members also spend late hours wiping down every hand rail and door knob once again.
MacVaugh also attributes her facilities success to closing her facility to outsiders early. Since early March, no one, except for employees of the facility, have been allowed to have contact with the residents of the community.
Pinnacle employees who come in close proximity of residents are prescreened and must wear protective equipment.
Macvaugh credits her entire staff for keeping Pinnacle coronavirus free.
Shemika Washington, the facilities director of nursing, has led her team of health professionals to quickly adjust to all the best practices in fighting the virus, Macvaugh said. Washington has a doctorate degree in nursing.
While locking the facility down has kept Pinnacle residents safe, it has required staff members, like activities director Danielle Brown, to come up with unique ways to help Pinnacle residents keep in touch with their loved ones. Pinnacle staff members, among other things, are helping elderly residents Facetime with family members and also send and receive a countless number of pictures. Pinnacle is also planning a parade this Sunday where family members of residents will line up in their cars and drive by the facility, waving at their loved ones as they pass by.
“We are doing all that we can to help our residents stay close with those who love them,” Macvaugh said.