The onset of the global pandemic last March caused a great deal of concern about the welfare of our residents and the staff who care for them. Since then, we’ve come a long way in understanding how to keep people safe. Yet we want to continue learning everything we can about how this virus operates in order to prevent its spread in the future and protect the health of those in our care.
That’s why we signed up to participate in Project ECHO, an innovative pilot program to help nursing home administrators and frontline staff combat the spread of COVID-19. Supported by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), and in collaboration with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), the program offers free training and mentorship to nursing homes nationwide.
Members of our staff are being trained in evidence-based best practices from national and local experts in safety measures including:
- Preventing and minimizing the spread of COVID-19
- Making the environment safe through infection control
- Managing case of COVID-19 including best care and treatment practices
- Relieving social isolation during COVID-19
What’s unique about the program is the collaborative learning style — everyone’s experiences, observations, and questions are heard and valued. That means that our staff will be sharing their own lessons learned over the past several months and hearing about best practices from others across the state and the nation. The experience and knowledge gained from this program will go a long way to help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 and ensure the health and safety of our seniors.
Our participation in Project ECHO is an extension of what we practice at United Hebrew: a constant focus on quality improvement. This professional development and training helps ensure that our staff — all true frontline heroes — have the tools and skills to provide the highest quality of care possible to our residents.