Important Update from Steve Fetyko, UMRC and Porter Hills President & CEO

An important update from Steve Fetyko, President and CEO:

Over our more than 160 years of combined experience, UMRC and Porter Hills has always focused on the health and well-being of those we are privileged to serve. Providing a safe, healthy and nurturing environment is our top priority. I am grateful for this opportunity to share with you the measures we have in place at UMRC and Porter Hills to address the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) as it evolves nationally and locally.

As you are now surely aware, the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation is dynamic and evolving daily. Our highly qualified and experienced clinical team continues to meet and exceed recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and state and local health departments as part of our ongoing efforts to minimize the potential risk to those we serve. Our response task force is meeting daily to provide guidance and support to our care teams as this situation continues to evolve. The plans we have developed and are implementing for this situation is an extension of the emergency preparedness plans that we constantly maintain. We have responded to contagious diseases before and are well prepared to scale our response as needed for those in our care.

While there are currently no confirmed coronavirus cases at our communities, we remain committed to ensuring all precautions are in place to minimize the potential risk of the virus. I have a few updates to share with you today regarding our response to this evolving situation and actions we are taking out of an abundance of caution for the safety of all our residents. These steps will be in place for the foreseeable future and will be modified as the state and local coronavirus situation evolves.

  • We have canceled, postponed, or redirected events at our communities that include external invitees. This includes marketing events as well as life enrichment activities that involve outside individuals. When these events are rescheduled, we will communicate the new dates.
  • Based on the CMS and CDC guidance, and the State’s recommendations to help deter the spread of coronavirus, we are restricting to all our care and senior living communities. Only essential visits (for end of life situations or when a visitor is essential for the resident’s emotional well-being, care and support) will be allowed at this time and should be limited to visits in the resident’s home/room while avoiding common areas. Community specific details will be provided. No visitors who meet the following criteria will be allowed to visit and we require any visitor who develops any of these signs or symptoms within 14 days of a visit to our communities to contact our infection control team.

Additionally, if any resident believes they meet the below criteria they should contact our infection control team so we can help determine what next steps should be.

  •  Signs and symptoms of a respiratory infection such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat.
  • In the last 14 days have had contact with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 or are under investigation for COVID-19 or are ill with respiratory illness.
  • International or domestic travel within the last 14 days to areas with sustained community transmission.
  • We understand that connecting with loved ones is incredibly important, and we are currently enhancing availability of technology to assist residents with connecting to friends and family. Please keep in touch via telephone, email, text, or through Skype or Facebook and let us know how we can help facilitate communication through these means.
  • We are strongly encouraging residents to avoid crowds and limit trips outside of our communities to only those that are essential.
  • We are restricting access to care areas and residential areas to only team members and vendors who provide essential care and services and are limiting delivery and entry points for these individuals as well. We are also applying the same screening procedures as outlined above to these individuals. Team member and vendors are being screened and will be restricted from our communities if they meet any of the following criteria.
    • Signs and symptoms of a respiratory infection such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat.
    • In the last 14 days have had contact with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 or are under investigation for COVID-19 or are ill with respiratory illness.
    • International or domestic travel within the last 14 days to areas with sustained community transmission.
  • All community-sponsored trips to external locations are suspended until further notice.
  • We have substantially increased cleaning with a focus on routinely touched surfaces and objects.
  • Individual community dining experiences will be evolving to include single use items and provide appropriate social distancing and manage size of groups.
  • If you receive services from private duty or agency-based caregivers check with their management to ensure that they are following the latest infection control guidelines.
  • We are strongly discouraging gathering of residents or team members of 10 or more. Class schedules may be modified to limit size and frequency of classes. Rare exceptions will be made when gatherings are critical to sharing information about critical care and support services.

We understand that this is a challenging time. While we continue to implement best practices aimed at keeping us all safe, I also know that no matter how careful all of us are, or how many precautions we have in place, there is a chance that someone who is part of the UMRC and Porter Hills family could become infected with the coronavirus. Should that scenario arise, please be assured we will follow all CDC, federal and state protocols to help prevent spread with actions set forth by our clinical teams that are built on evidence-based medicine. We will continue to keep you informed of any changes.
Finally, I can’t stress enough the importance of practicing good health habits. I encourage all of us to show how much we care for our residents, their families and our care and support teams by following the CDC recommendations on how to help prevent the spread of the virus. Please refer to the previous communications and guidance we have provided. Key highlights include:

  • Frequent and thorough hand washing. This cannot be stressed enough.
  •  Avoid touching your face.
  •  Social distancing – maintain distance of approximately 6 feet from others when possible.
  • Avoid handshaking, hugs and other close contact.
  • Avoid large crowds when possible and sanitize commonly touched objects frequently.
  • If you show any signs or symptoms or meet any of the criteria noted above, stay home and please inform us so we can discuss your risk level for the Coronavirus and any potential next steps.

We have a long history of providing outstanding care and services over the decades and we have an incredibly dedicated and talented team that is well-prepared and trained to prevent and respond to health situations like this.
We understand you may have questions. Please direct those to our COVID-19 question email The appropriate Quality and Infection Control team member or response task force member will provide responses. Thank you for your attention and assistance. Together we can help
ensure the residents, families and team members we serve are as safe and healthy as possible.
Infection Control Team
Missi Latter, MSN, RN: VP of Quality and Compliance
Kathy Spence, RN: Education & Infection Control Manager- EAST
Paula Randall, RN: Education & Infection Control Manager- WEST

Response Task Force
Team Lead – Steve Fetyko, President and CEO – team lead
Infection Control Lead – Missi Latter, MSN, RN: VP of Quality and Compliance
Community Operations Lead – Nicole Maag, VP of Operations
Home and Community Based Service Lead – Lori Potter, Chief Operating Officer
Communications Lead – James Kelly, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer
Staff and Supports Lead – Michelle Henderson, Chief Human Resource Officer
Technology Support Lead – Paul Babcock, VP of Information Technology
Supply Management Lead – Kate Collins, Chief Project Development Officer