Dear 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.

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.

Last week, we updated you that we extended our masking to all Birch Bay staff when providing care, cleaning and delivering food. Following guidance from the CDC, Source Control masking will be extended to residents beginning Friday, April 24th. We will be providing cloth face coverings to residents who need it. Independent residents will be expected to clean their own face coverings unless assistance is needed. Staff will be responsible for cleaning face coverings for residents in Pleasant Cove and Safe Harbor. Attached are cleaning instructions for cloth face coverings that was provided to us by the CDC.

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 state of civil emergency until May 15, 2020. Residents have also agreed to continue to shelter in place and we would ask that residents continue to do that for the health and safety of all.

As a reminder from last week, 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.

This week we also launched the Birch Bay Marketplace: a grocery order service for Inn and Cottage residents. A weekly menu of produce, dairy, dry goods, deli items, frozen items and meats is available. Orders would need to be placed on Wednesdays and available for delivery by our staff 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.

Another option, our Independent Apartment residents can benefit from is our Care Free Meal Packages and the free Medication Delivery service through Omnicare. Please contact Maeghan Clark for more information at 288-8014 x 5228.

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