Susan Cooper A Message from the President & CEO

Susan C. Drabic on COVID-19

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Susan Cooper

A Message from the President & CEO

In all that we've been through over these last months, March 2020 seems like a distant memory. It was at that time we introduced many restrictions to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 spreading within our communities. Over one weekend (I will never forget), we put together a COVID-19 Daily Crisis Management Team to deal with the myriad of changes and precautions that needed to happen immediately. We closed our communities to all visitors and halted the movement of residents and staff between our different styles of living. In short, we changed every aspect of the way we've worked so hard to perfect the delivery of services to the residents living in our communities. We closed dining venues and our hair salon, we canceled group events and activities, we discouraged travel for vacation and we re-directed our housekeeping and maintenance services to focus on frequent deep disinfecting and sanitizing of high touch surfaces.

Overnight we developed our own grocery shopping and delivery service for residents, we invested substantially in PPE and in the installation of isolation materials and equipment to construct isolation areas for safety precautions. We conducted exercise classes in hallways outside of resident apartments and we delivered happy hour fun, games and refreshments to our residents living in our cottage community. We also invested in a lot of new technology to bring employee team meetings online and allow those who could work remotely from home to do so. And we restricted access to our community to one designated area where screening of all employees for symptoms and possible COVID-19 exposure is completed before any team member can enter our buildings to work.

Thankfully, our vigilance and early implementation of restrictions at both of our communities paid off. While there has been a lot of negative national publicity about nursing homes throughout the country where COVID-19 has spread like wildfire, we've been doing everything possible to prevent the spread of this virus in our communities. We've had minimal cases of employees and residents in residential living and personal care test positive for the virus. And we are so grateful that we've had no cases of COVID-19 among our most vulnerable population of residents who live in our nursing home. And that isn't the result of good luck, good fortune or happenstance…it's the result of a dedicated team of professionals working together towards one common goal…to protect the health and safety of our residents who we care about deeply.

As we entered the month of May, we quickly realized this pandemic wasn't going to be resolved anytime soon. That meant we needed to begin planning for how we were going to create a "new normal" at Morningstar Living. To make that happen, the COVID-19 Daily Crisis Management Team evolved into what we call our "New Normal Transition Team" (NNTT). This team works together every week to develop, implement and communicate detailed plans to move our communities forward again, toward some semblance of a "new normal." One of the most beneficial aspects of living your life in a community is the ability to socialize, engage and be connected with others. And this virus was forcing us to keep residents from doing this. Additionally, residents could not see family members and friends for months, and this was really hard on them. And so, in May for Mother's Day, and then again in June, for Father's Day, we planned and orchestrated "drive-by" visitation parades of cars with family members and friends for our residents.

As we enter the final months of summer 2020, the NNTT is no longer thinking about "post-COVID-19." Instead, this team is now focused on developing ways to adapt our operations to living safely with the threat of COVID-19 until there is a vaccine or other treatment. We've already developed and implemented a phased strategy for re-starting services and re-opening various amenities at our communities. And as we continue to follow the recommendations and guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the PA Department of Health (DOH), the NNTT has developed and communicated safe, limited and cautious in-person visitation policies and procedures for resident visitation. A strict masking policy is in place. We continue to screen visitors, staff and residents for symptoms and possible COVID-19 exposure. We've re-purposed some of our office space for designated visitation areas where physical distancing can be achieved. And we continue deep cleaning and sanitization of all touch spaces. And what a joy it has been seeing our residents reunited with their loved ones again!

In spite of all of the fear and negativity surrounding this pandemic, I've had the unexpected joy of witnessing the very best of humanity at work. Residents and their families have extended so much support and patience to us as we put some very restrictive plans into place. And employees have put their own fears aside and showed up for work, placing their concern for our residents ahead of their own families. We have a banner on the front of our administration building that reads: "Heroes Work Here." And that is truly an understatement. And it is truly evidence of the commitment and dedication to the mission and core purpose of Morningstar Living…

"Making a enriching life's journey for all we serve."

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Morningstar Living - Our Communities

Our Communities

Moravian Hall Square – Nazareth, PA

Moravain Hall SquareFor seniors aged 62 and up, Moravian Hall Square is the region’s most desirable retirement community offering the best of everything – immediate access to the Lehigh Valley’s cultural events, restaurants, and attractions – endless educational, recreational, religious, and entertainment opportunities on campus – and, a full continuum of care designed to meet the health care needs of residents as they change over time. In our 29th year in the center of Nazareth, Pennsylvania, the community has achieved the highest standards of excellence for resident care and service.
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Heritage Village – Nazareth, PA

Heritage VillageThe new 50-acre Heritage Village, a Life Plan Community being constructed in Upper Nazareth Township, will serve residents 60 and over.  Single Cottages, Twin Cottages and Townhomes can be secured now for residency during 2018 – 2020. Residents will have access to the Nazareth campus for health care and access to home care services. The entire countryside campus and the residences at Heritage Village have been engineered and designed without stairs so future relocation is not necessary.  All homes on this campus have two bedrooms, full kitchen, garages, and offer energy saving features and innovative amenities.  
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Senior Solutions – Easton, PA

Morningstar Senior SolutionsTo support people who want to remain at home, Senior Solutions provides non-medical home care services and care management.  Home care services include assistance with activities of daily living, such as bathing, cooking, cleaning and companionship for socialization, as well as transportation to run errands and get to and from appointments.  Certified Care Managers help adult children understand the health care and safety needs of their parents by conducting and monitoring in-home safety and performing routine health assessments to prevent accidents in the home that often result in hospitalization.   Home Caregivers and Care Managers at Senior Solutions have made it possible for thousands of people to stay safe, secure and independent at home.
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Morningstar Living Foundation

The Morningstar Living Foundation supports the mission, people and outreach of the Morningstar Living affiliates. Dedication to providing wellness and security for older adults and caregivers requires resources of funding and partnerships. The foundation endeavors to expand the reach of services and care by stewarding charitable funds for a wide variety of programs and support that directly benefits older adults in the greater Lehigh Valley region.
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Continuing Care at Home (CCaH) 

Friends Life Care & Morningstar Living have partnered to provide comprehensive health and wellness solutions for people living at home. Providing a unique combination of financial benefit, prevention and wellness, care and coordination, we offer a wide range of plans to make it possible for you to have the future you envision. As a plan member you won’t have to worry about where care will come from, who will arrange and manage it, and how it will be paid for, if and when your health changes.
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