Elderwood dedicates 22 beds to COVID-19 recovery in Amherst

Beds intended to help treat those with post-acute symptoms

Mike Baggerman
March 30, 2020 - 12:22 pm
Elderwood at Amherst. March 30, 2020 (WBEN Photo/Tim Wenger)

Elderwood at Amherst. March 30, 2020 (WBEN Photo/Tim Wenger)

AMHERST, N.Y. (WBEN) – Elderwood at Amherst announced on Monday they are creating a 22-bed wing of their nursing home dedicated solely to coronavirus patients that are no longer struggling from the worst of the symptoms at area hospitals.

The post-acute unit at Elderwood is isolated from the rest of the building. Officials would not say how many residents are at this specific location but said there is a separate outside entrance which will lead to the post-acute unit and doors that act as a barrier between the two sides of the location at 4459 Bailey Avenue.

“We have the benefit of being in a preferred-provider relationship with Kaleida Health Systems,” Warren Cole, CEO and Founder of Elderwood, said. “…We have focused on Amherst as the appropriate facility to establish a dedicated sub-acute unit to receive COVID-positive patients that are prepared and ready to leave the acute care environment. Amherst lays out especially well to achieve this.”

Demand is high as coronavirus cases continue to soar in Erie County. Elderwood said they will receive people for continued treatment through Kaleida Health and other area hospitals as they begin to recover from some of the worst symptoms of coronavirus. Still, Elderwood said they will continue to accept patients, regardless of a positive cases of coronavirus.

They expect turnover to be approximately 20 days for those recovering from coronavirus.

Elderwood confirmed a recent case of coronavirus from an employee at its Hamburg location last Friday. They said that the employee had not worked at that location since March 8. No residents at Elderwood’s area nursing homes have been diagnosed with coronavirus.

The location on Bailey Avenue is the only location planned as a completely dedicated unit.

Families have not been able to visit their relatives who are in nursing homes. To alleviate concerns about the safety for the families, Cole said they are following extreme measures for infection control and said they are doing everything they can to create effective isolation.

“We believe as a result of those measures, the residents and the balance of the building are as safe or safer in this environment than in any other environment,” Cole said.

Dr. Paul Shields, the Medical Director at Elderwood at Amherst, said the unit will reduce the risk of spread within the building and stressed that it does not increase it in any way.

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