Braintree, MA (March 18, 2020) – We wanted to reach out to our entire Peabody community to provide some information concerning our response to the current COVID-19 epidemic.
While information on this virus continues to be updated on a daily basis, and although we are clearly not health care professionals and the best source of information continues to be from the CDC and other governmental agencies, we wanted to confirm the steps we have taken and provide you with some information we have gathered from the CDC and other sources.
What is Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
COVID-19 is a new disease and the way it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread in the United States, is still being determined. The CDC continues to update the information and recommendations on the virus. For the most up to date information, please refer to the CDC website (www.cdc.gov).
How is COVID-19 Spread
We continue to learn about this virus. Here is what we are currently being told about how the virus spreads:
- Person-to-Person Spread – The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
Can someone spread the virus without being sick?
- People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
- Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
- Surface-to-Person Exposure – It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. Current information suggests that the virus can survive on a surface, although the exact amount of time is still being confirmed.
What are the Symptoms?
Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases. The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure:
- Shortness of breath
What Are We Doing?
While our onsite management offices will remain open at this time, we will be closing the offices to the general public. We understand that there are concerns about face-to-face contact, either through the annual/interim recertification process or lease renewal; therefore, wherever possible we will be using alternate methods of communication such as phone interviews, or using skype, email, us mail or fax for necessary documentation.
For all other matters, should you need anything from the office, please use remote means of communication (call the office or email) and we will respond to you as soon as possible.
Resident payments should be paid online, via mail or placed in the resident payment box provided outside the management office.
Effective immediately, we will not be performing any in-unit routine maintenance. If you have any such work needed in your residence, we will reschedule for a future date.
If you have an emergency maintenance request – those requests that are reasonably considered to cause an imminent health or safety risk if not addressed immediately – please call the emergency maintenance line in the same manner as before.
You will be asked to confirm whether you or any person in the residence has any of the foregoing symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath), OR have been either mandated or voluntarily quarantined OR have traveled outside of the U.S. within the last 14 days. Based on the response to, the questions asked, staff will confirm the conditions which will be required for entry and may seek advice from the Department of Public Health.
Please note, with the safety and security of our team members in mind, we have asked all staff to utilize personal protective equipment when addressing emergency maintenance or handling resident documents (i.e. resident payments).
As previously communicated, we have and will continue to increase cleaning of all the common areas.
In order to try to protect the health of our residents, staff, and the community, all community gatherings are suspended at this time. In addition, we are requesting that all residents avoid congregating in the common areas.
Restrictions on Community Visitors / Guests
In order to try to protect the health of our residents, staff, and the community, we recommend that all non-essential guests discontinue visiting the community. ‘Essential’ guests are considered those who provide medical/homecare services, food delivery services, or otherwise.
In-Person Board / Owner Meetings
At this time, we will be suspending all in-person Board and Owner meetings, Remote methods of communication (i.e. conference calls) should be used.
What Can We Do?
Our community is just that, a community. We have always come together during difficult times and we will do so again. Here is some guidance on what we can do to try to stop the spread of this virus and avoid exposure:
- We would STRONGLY request that you inform the management office if you or any person in the unit:
- Have any of the foregoing symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
- have been either mandated or voluntarily quarantined; OR
- have traveled outside of the U.S. within the last 14 days.
- In the event that you are subject to self-quarantine, you and all household members must remain in your residence, other than in the event of an emergency and, for the protection of the public, other residents and staff, residents are not to enter or utilize the common areas. Guests and visitors should also be restricted from your residence during such self-quarantine, except for properly trained and protected health care workers.
- Wash your hands as much as possible, especially when you leave your unit and when you return. Purell or other hand sanitizers should be used when soap and water are not available. Avoid touching your face.
- Practice social distancing and try to stay 6 feet from others. Avoid areas with large groups of people.
- All community events will be postponed as of this time.
- Be kind to one and other! Call your neighbors that may be in need and check in with them.
- STAY INFORMED. Check out the CDC website which seems to have some of the most up to date information. (www.cdc.gov).
While our staff may not be able to meet with you directly, we are still here to assist you in any way we can. Should anyone have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.