IN MID-MARCH, AS San Francisco mayor London Breed issued a citywide stay-at-home order, Peggy Cmiel started getting prepared. Cmiel is the director of clinical operations at the San Francisco Center for Jewish Living, or SFCJL, a 9-acre senior housing complex in the Excelsior neighborhood that includes long-term care facilities, short-term rehab housing, and a memory care wing. The campus houses over 300 elderly residents, members of one of the populations most vulnerable to the deadly and highly infectious coronavirus that has spread across the globe.” Cmiel’s staff stocked up on personal protective equipment and masks for workers and residents; screened everyone who walked in the door for symptoms; hired more staff to clean bathrooms and common areas; and started educating everyone on best practices for containing the virus, like washing hands, avoiding close contact, and keeping an eye out for symptoms like fevers or coughs. And while nursing homes account for nearly half of California’s coronavirus fatalities, at the SFCJL not a single resident has tested positive for the virus. “Getting an early start was really the most helpful thing we did,” says Cmiel. “The doorknobs in this facility have never been more clean before.”

 

 

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