The Villas at Killearn Lakes Maintains Care Model Through COVID-19 Restrictions

As nursing homes and assisted living facilities have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 crisis, a local long-term care facility, the Villas at Killearn Lakes, is committed to both protecting residents and enriching their lives during this time.

The Villas at Killearn Lakes is a community of long-term care homes located in northeast Tallahassee. Each villa has twelve individual suites, where residents, or “elders,” live. The care model of the Villas emphasizes forming individual relationships with elders and providing them with respect and choice.

Bobbie Massey, licensed clinical social worker at the Villas, said staff at the Villas have implemented several precautions to protect residents and staff against COVID-19. These include rigorous daily cleaning procedures as well as frequent COVID-19 screenings.

Staff are screened and have their temperatures taken at the beginning of each shift. Visitors, which are limited to only essential medical personnel, also have their temperatures taken. Staff and visitors are required to wear masks.

Additionally, new residents moving into the Villas from another facility or a hospital must provide negative COVID-19 tests.

Massey said both staff and residents have appreciated the precautions, but there have been downfalls.

“Verbal communication can be a challenge with masks and talking to others who are hard of hearing or have limited cognitive functioning,” she said. “Elders have expressed missing seeing their family members.”

The Villas is currently using video chat to help connect residents to their families, and they are allowing window visits. Massey said visitors will be allowed again when authorized by the United States government and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Massey said staff at the Villas are committed to maintaining quality and compassionate care throughout the pandemic.

“We have found people are attracted to living in an environment which essentially poses less health risk than a large institutional setting,” she said. “Our goal is to continue to enrich the lives of the Elders who live here as we face the challenges of COVID restrictions.”

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