Aside from essential healthcare personnel, just about everyone is barred from visiting long-term care facilities these days. A notable exception to the rule is state CMS surveyors, one of whom stopped by unannounced to visit us in the Health Center this week.
Like nearly everything else, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought about notable changes to annual Medicare surveillance of certified long-term care facilities. Traditional 4-day annual surveys (ours had been expected in March) were suspended in order to allow for brief, focused surveys of high-priority areas such as infection control (in addition to complaint response visits). On Tuesday, our surveyor spent about half a day in Skilled Nursing conducting a targeted infection control survey, interviewing team members in both nursing administration and direct care, observing care of patients under isolation, auditing resident charts, and reviewing Deerfield’s COVID-19 Response Plan and general infection control policies.
We are overjoyed to announce that this year’s survey, specially aimed at reviewing Deerfield’s COVID-19 response, yielded no deficiencies! The surveyor offered high praise for our staff, remarked on the clarity and meticulousness of our policies and procedures, and even stated that he wished he could live at Deerfield!