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Introducing the TORCH Emergency Housing Network!
Website Administrator
Published on: 6/22/2020
The State requires that residential facilities have agreements with other area facilities to provide physical accommodations for their residents in the case of emergency evacuation. TORCH stands ready to assist. We invite you to join the TORCH Emergency Housing Network.

~ Current News ~

FDA Advisory regarding Eskbiochem Hand Sanitizer
Published on: 6/24/2020
FDA advises consumers not to use hand sanitizer products manufactured by Eskbiochem
To read the entire article go to:
 https://www.fda.gov/drugs/drug-safety-and-availability/fda-advises-consumers-not-use-hand-sanitizer-products-manufactured-eskbiochem
HHSC Releases COVID-19 Response Plan for ALFs v3.1
Website Administrator
Published on: 6/17/2020
HHSC has released an updated version (3.1) of the COVID-19 Response Plan for ALFs.
Call for $5 billion in funding, coronavirus testing for assisted living facilities
KXAN News
Published on: 6/8/2020
Call for $5 billion in funding, coronavirus testing for assisted living facilities

TORCH Conference Calls

TORCH Conference Call on Thursday Night (8/6)
Published on: 7/31/2020
TORCH Conference Call on Thursday Night (8/6)

Conference Calls - Questions?

Questions for Conference Call Discussion?
Topics of interest for this week's conference call?

Chapter: H-TORCH

Request for Omnicare Testing
Sonia Thomas, RN, BSN, SMQT
Published on: 7/22/2020
We have a new process in Region 6 (Houston area) set up for ALFs and NFs to submit their request for Omnicare testing.

Facilities can now submit their testing request via a Survey Monkey link. Click the news article title to get the links...

COVID-19

"Caring for the Caregiver" Weekly COVID-19 Support
Published on: 8/5/2020
Michelle Zadrozny, LCSW-S and The Central Texas Home Care Coalition are providing FREE weekly support sessions for paid caregivers every Saturday at 1:00 PM Central Time.

Michelle is a licensed clinical social worker and she developed a Peer support and training curriculum for Caregivers last year with a grant from NDWA. It is more informal support - each group starts off with a check in and introductions, and then the group provides support (Peer and facilitated) to Caregivers on anything that comes up. The session usually ends with a brief grounding meditation. Themes are around coping with the uncertainty and anxiety around COVID-19, and working amidst increased risk for essential workers.
Memo to Providers - Ombudsmen Re-entering Facilities
Patty Ducayet, State Long-Term Care Ombudsman
Published on: 8/3/2020
Due to health concerns related to COVID-19 for residents, facility staff, and ombudsmen, the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program has not conducted visits to facilities since March 2020. Effective immediately, certified ombudsmen will resume conducting visits at facilities.
Informational Surveys by Fire Departments
Published on: 5/27/2020
Governor Abbott Directs TDEM, DSHS, HHSC To Test All Nursing Home Residents, Staff In Texas -- Directive does not apply to ALFs
You are heroes!
John Darby
Published on: 5/19/2020
The Texas Organization of Residential Care Homes (TORCH) represents the 60% of Assisted Living facilities in Texas that are licensed as “Small” – that is less than 16 beds. According to our research, only one “Small” facility here in Texas has experienced a COVID outbreak!
New in the TORCH Store: Infectious Disease Policy Supplement re: COVID-19
Website Administrator
Published on: 4/27/2020
Just released! Update your Policy & Procedure Manual with the new COVID-19 Emergency Response Rules Policy
BREAKING NEWS: LTC Providers Required to Report COVID-19 to HHSC
HHSC
Published on: 4/1/2020
Effective immediately, a provider must report every presumptive and confirmed case of COVID-19 in staff and individuals receiving services from the provider as a self-reported incident. A presumptive or confirmed case is considered a critical incident.
COVID Rangers
Published on: 3/27/2020
A new website provides guides for volunteers supporting medical professionals with care mask covers.

TORCH Store Items

Searchable Regulations Document available
Published on: 7/7/2020
TORCH has published a searchable copy of the 2020 HHSC Regulations, and it is available on the TORCH Store.

HHSC Updates

HHSC Publishes Data on COVID-19 Cases in NFs and ALFs
On Monday, July 27, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) began electronically posting to its website COVID-19 case counts and deaths by facility name for state supported living centers, state hospitals, and state-licensed nursing and assisted living facilities.

Education

Marketing Through COVID
Published on: 8/5/2020
As an owner or manager of a residential assisted living facility, you "wear a lot of hats", particularly in a small facility. Your time is valuable, and you need to ensure that you maximize the results of your efforts in every area of your business. But with all of your responsibilities, you don't have the time to go out and market your facility like a full-time marketing person would. Maybe you don't even know where to start looking for leads, or what to say to them once you find them.
And with the current health crisis caused by COVID-19 and the sensationalism of stories regarding infections in the senior living industry, it is so much harder to help families understand that their loved ones are safe in assisted living. If only you had a way to have the business brought to you...
What if I told you that you can?
Manager's Courses available online
Published on: 7/7/2020
TORCH continues to host Manager's Courses online monthly.