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Montgomery Place sustains period of no virus on campus during this time of COVID-19

Today, we wrapped up the testing for independent living residents who wanted to take the test. The last round of results will be back tomorrow. So far…everyone is testing negative! This is such a comfort to many of us.

Still, we continue to educate and emphasize that this test only measures a point in time. I’ve been asked why we cannot get tested each and every day like The White House staff.

I see several barriers that, unfortunately, I cannot influence:

  • Availability of testing equipment and kits—While I do not know the types of test administered at The White House, I do know the supply available to Montgomery Place is extremely limited.
  • Cost for supplies and laboratory processing—Although President Trump has said that testing will be available free to all, that is not yet a reality. Supplies and lab readings are expensive. At this time, some costs might be paid by government, some by insurance, and sometimes by individuals. Currently, prices for the test kits and processing them range from $50 to $200-plus.
  • Impact on inventory of PPE—One estimate indicates conducting unlimited testing would burn through 80 percent of available PPE—masks, gloves, goggles, face shields and gowns—in a matter of weeks, creating a shortage for healthcare workers caring for sick individuals.

As a country and at Montgomery Place, we still experience a supply chain challenge, even months into this global pandemic. Gloves and sanitizer are in short supply. Test kits, too. And there are too few lab technicians and specialists to read test results. We hear about new machines developed by Abbott sitting unused. When they are deployed, these machines still require other supplies including test swabs, serums, antiseptics, gloves, gowns, face shields and sanitizers.

So until some of these supply issues can be resolved, we must remain patient while we sustain our commitment to isolating, wearing masks, distancing in public places and washing hands. Continuing to educate ourselves will inform our motivation.

Today, I shared information about wearing of face masks during our Noon News program televised for residents on Montgomery Place’s in-house Channel 4. I reviewed the benefits of a variety of styles—cloth and surgical masks, N95 and equivalents—plus demonstrated correct and incorrect ways to wear them. Too many people still wear their mask on their chin instead of covering their nose and mouth. A significant number of others let their mask slip down to below their nose. Education and practice will help us instill good habits about wearing a mask.

Today at Montgomery Place, we remain free of COVID-19. Let’s hope that status stays with us tomorrow as well.

Have a good evening!

If you’d like to share some tips about wearing masks or information that may be helpful concerning COVID-19, please call me on my mobile phone number, 773-617-1317, at any time.

Learning together, strengthens community.

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