Dear Inn Residents & Families of Birch Bay Retirement Village

I hope you are all feeling well and healthy. The team at Birch Bay Village considers maintaining the health, wellness and safety of our residents as our number one priority. We continue to monitor information and guidance from the Maine Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and are working with state and local public health and emergency preparedness officials to prevent the illness and strengthen our preparation for and response to outbreak.

We continue to be focused on infection control best practices with our staff and residents. We are screening all staff and residents every day. Staff have been trained on the symptoms of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), CDC recommended infection prevention techniques, and have clear protocols for staff to stay home and not come to work if they are ill or symptomatic. You may notice that our staff is now wearing cloth masks when providing care, cleaning and delivering food. We expect that guidance for Source Control masking will be extended to residents soon and we will provide cloth masks to residents who need it.

We currently have no cases of COVID-19 among our staff and residents. We have policies and procedures in place for when or if the first case is identified.

As a reminder, Birch Bay continues to restrict visitation on our campus as required by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS). Based on federal guidance, no visitor will be permitted into our community except for certain compassionate care situations such as an end-of-life situation.

Governor Janet Mills has extended the stay at home order for all Maine residents until May 15, 2020. Residents have agreed to continue to shelter in place and we would ask that residents continue to do that for the health and safety of all.

The CDC has issued guidance for long-term care environments to minimize deliveries of groceries, food and supplies to Long Term Care facilities by families and public. The concern is the potential for the virus to remain on items friends or family may bring to residents if they are ill but do not have symptoms. This can be bypassed by a mail/shipping process so the items are untouched for a time believed to be sufficient for any virus to be killed. By shipping, the outer packaging can be removed safely by our staff and discarded. The contents can then be delivered to you with less risk of transmission. We understand our resident’s desire to have your family shop for you and provide for your needs; however, we ask that you make other arrangements to provide for these essentials other than personal delivery. Some residents have had success shipping supplies using Amazon, FedEx, and the USPS.

The last day for families/friends to drop off groceries and other supplies to Birch Bay will be Sunday, April 19th.

Next week, we will launch the Birch Bay Marketplace: a grocery order service for Inn and Cottage residents. A menu of produce, dairy, dry goods, deli items, frozen items and meats will be available for order. We are finalizing our order sheets and expect that they should be available early next week. Orders would need to be placed on Wednesdays and available for delivery by our staff to your apartments on Fridays. Any items purchased will be added your monthly invoice. If special items are requested, Chef Maggie will do her best to find those items. The availability of certain items may change from week to week.

Another option, you may temporarily benefit from is our Care Free Meal Packages and the free Medication Delivery service through Omnicare. Please contact Susanne Hopkins for more information about this. or 288-8014 x 5211.

We are grateful to the support of residents and their families during this difficult time. Please continue to visit our website and Facebook Page for regular updates and do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have.


Peter Sullivan, MBA, RN-BC, LRCA, CDP, Executive Director, Birch Bay Retirement Village