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Colfax Health and Rehab – 2-3-2016

January 2016 will go down in history as warm Wisconsin winter. This week was no exception.

Here at the Big Yellow House we helped heat up January when we went Gold! The excitement seemed to build up all week long as we got ready for our 50th Golden Anniversary Gala on Saturday. There were many things to do and many people to do them. O’Neil Creek Winery creators of Fruit and Specialty Wines from Bloomer provided the wine for our wine tasting. Jordan Herrick entertained everyone with his beautiful music. We appreciate the many, many people and companies that donated 75 items for the auction. By the time the glitter had settled the winners were announced. Bill LaRue won the I Pad-mini gift basket, Mary Marzofka won the Adirondack bench, Marlys Kruger won the 50/50 raffle and Sharon Gunderson won the Timberwolves Luxury Ticket. The Golden Ticket $500.00 winner was Angie Gleiter Our Gala was a great success and the volunteers and staff worked so hard to make the evening extraordinary. All of people who attended this event are the people who made it so special and because of you all we raised just over $5,000. We are well on our way to turning the key in our new transport van.

The following is a letter from Robin Edwards, RN about preventing infections.

Greetings from Colfax Health and Rehab!

As we care for our residents we are committed to protecting our vulnerable population from infections. This letter is to share with you as residents, family, friends and guardians some of our standards we implement in carrying out this task.

Infections in long term care facilities stem from various causes including poor hand washing, open wounds, medical devices such as IV tubes which break the protective skin barrier, compromised immune systems and physical changes in the body.

The most important step in infection prevention is hand washing for staff, residents and visitors. We have policies for soap and water hand washing as well as sanitizing hand rub use. We observe these practices periodically to assure policies are followed. It is important for visitors as well, as the spread of infection can occur easily. Soap and water hand washing is carried out by wetting hands, lathering with soap and cleaning all surfaces of the hands for 20 seconds, then rinsing and drying and turning off the faucet with a paper towel. This is the only method acceptable for any gastrointestinal illness. Hand rub sanitizer is acceptable if hands are not visibly soiled and we are not dealing with any type of gastrointestinal illness.

We follow strict guide lines for gastrointestinal and respiratory illness monitoring and care in accordance with the State of Wisconsin Public Health standards. We are in the time of year when there is an increase of these types of illnesses. We also network closely with our state epidemiology and Dunn County public health department year round to keep up to date on our local community illness patterns. If we find we are in an outbreak status we take measures directed by state and federal survey agencies and our public health departments. The goal is protection of our residents, staff and community. Influenza respiratory illnesses and gastrointestinal illness can lead to hospitalization and death in some cases. Measures include but are not limited to asking that visitation be restricted during the illness, however if it is crucial you visit please see a nurse so we may educate you on the type of illness and precautions to take while visiting. If visitors are ill, we encourage you to consider picking another time if you have an illness which may be contagious. But again, if you need to visit, please see the nurse for precautions to take which may include a mask, gown, hand washing or other measures. As many other long term care facilities, we have had outbreaks in the past and they typically cannot be prevented but with close monitoring and early detection and action, they may be limited in numbers and severity. That is our goal. Should an outbreak be determined, we call or email named family contacts to notify you.

As we do annually, we provide vaccinations to staff and residents for influenza and we repeatedly have great numbers.

Staff are not allowed to work if they have a contagious illness, and they may not return to work until they are free from significant symptoms for 48 hours.

If you wish to learn more about gastrointestinal and respiratory illness you may get information via the CDC website, or ask Quinn Nellesen, DON or Robin Edwards, Infection Preventionist.

Thank-you for support and caring for our residents and staff.

~ Robin Edwards, RN – Infection Preventionist