News and Events

UPDATE FROM THE ADMINISTRATOR

Beginning March 1, 2021 GARCC Moves to COVID Phase III of our Reopening Plan
March 1, 2021

COVID Updates

I am pleased to announce that 90% percent of our residents received the Pfizer Covid 19 vaccine along with 70 percent of our staff. We have gone 28 days without a new case of Covid by staff or resident. Per CDC guidelines/IDPH recommendations we will be moving to phase three or our reopening plan which means in person visits.

All visits will be by appointment only and we will be bringing your loved ones to the first floor for you to visit. You will be screened and have to wear the appropriate PPE to visit, masks, gowns, gloves and eye protection. Only two visitors from the same household will be allowed and visitations will be supervised. Social Services will be contacting you to arrange visitations beginning March 1, 2021. Please note that a single positive Covid test from either a resident or a staff member will result in us returning to phase one with no visits allowed. As always, we will keep you updated on the situation. Please continue to visit our website for any updates and changes.

Pinnacle Quality Insight’s 2021 Customer Experience Award™

I am pleased to announce that The Greek American Rehab & Care Centre, is the recipient of Pinnacle Quality Insight’s 2021 Customer Experience Award. Qualifying for the award in the category of Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation, Greek American Rehab & Care Centre displays a continued dedication to providing Best in Class senior healthcare services.

Receiving the award is an honor, especially with the many challenges we all faced this past year during the COVID19 pandemic, I would like to recognize my staff for their award-winning dedication and service to our residents.

Throughout its 19-year history of serving the community, the Greek American Rehab & Care Centre has placed a strong emphasis on ensuring that the individual needs of every resident are met. Over the course of 2020, a sampling of Greek American & Rehab Care Centre’s families has participated in monthly telephone interviews that include open-ended questions, as well as the opportunity to rate the Greek American in specific categories.

Every month, we have gathered real-time survey results to gain a better understanding of the residents needs and make improvements when necessary.

By qualifying for the Pinnacle Customer Experience Award™, the Greek American Rehab & Care Centre has satisfied the rigorous demand of scoring in the top 15% of the nation across a 12-month average. Clients have the opportunity to achieve this Best in Class distinction monthly in many categories designed to accurately reflect each resident and their families experience.

Spring is right around the corner!

Dino Varnavas,
Administrator

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MESSAGE FROM THE ADMINISTRATOR

January 2021

Happy New Year,

As the year ends and the new year begins, I wanted to take the opportunity to wish everyone a happy and healthy new year. 2020 has been quite the challenge and we hope that the availability of the Covid vaccine will start us on a path back to pre Covid activities and visitation.

CVS pharmacy was here on January second and third and gave our residents and staff the first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine. Since this is a two-shot vaccine, they will be returning on Saturday the 23rd and Sunday the 24th of January to give the second dose.

Unfortunately, administering the vaccine does not mean that we can immediately open our doors for visitation. We will still have to social distance and wear masks. When we can go 28 days without a positive case of Covid for both residents and staff AND the covid positivity rate in our area is less than 10% we will be able to schedule in person visitation.

Thank you for your patience and understanding, we look forward to 2021 with cautious optimism.

Kali Xprovia!

Dino Varnavas
Administrator

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COVID-19 VACCINATION

Frequently Asked Questions
December 16, 2020

The following Questions and Answers were written based on guidelines of the Center of Disease Control (CDC), the Mayo Clinic and NorthShore University Health Systems as of December 16, 2020.

Download this FAQ (PDF) here

Visit the Cook County Community Vaccination Program website

How do the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines work?
Both are forms of a new type of vaccine that involves injecting mRNA, which replicates the spike protein on the COVID-19 virus. Once you’re injected with the vaccine, your body begins to manufacture the same spike protein to create antibodies to fight it. If you’ve taken the vaccine and are later exposed to COVID-19, the antibodies created inside your body will keep the virus from entering the cells and causing an infection.

Is it a live vaccine?
No. The two vaccines with EUA contain the virus mRNA (which is like a recipe) for the spike protein on the virus.

Can I get COVID-19 from the vaccine?
No. While the vaccine doesn’t contain either live or dead virus, you may develop “flu-like” symptoms such as tiredness, fevers or headaches after receiving one or both doses of the vaccine but these usually resolve within three days.

If someone has previously had COVID-19, should they get the vaccine?
Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection is possible, people may be advised to get a vaccine even if they have been sick with the virus before. If you have had an infection in the previous 90 days, there are differing opinions on whether or not you will need to wait for 90 days after you have recovered from your COVID infection.

What if I’m immune compromised or have an autoimmune disorder. Would it be optimal for me to get vaccinated now or should I wait?
For people who have immunodeficiencies, the COVID-19 vaccine likely will be as effective as it is for the general population. Experts in the field believe that since both vaccines use mRNA—and not live virus—the injection would potentially be suitable for immune-deficient patients. It’s still unclear how the vaccine will work for those who have antibody deficiencies, as they could likely have an incomplete response. Immune-compromised individuals should discuss with their physician before deciding on whether to get vaccinated.

Are there any individual factors that make me ineligible to receive the vaccine at this time?
The CDC’s Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices also has published its guidance on special populations, and it supports offering COVID-19 vaccine to all individuals age 16 and older. The only absolute contraindication is for individuals with a known anaphylactic reaction to any of the components in the vaccine, in particular to polyethylene glycol.

I understand there are two doses of the vaccine required, why is that? How long do I need to wait before getting the second dose?
Yes, you will need to take both doses of the vaccine from the same manufacturer administered either 21 or 28 days apart. This double dose allows your body to develop a stronger immune response to counter a future infection. Your body also needs the extra exposure time to learn how to most effectively fight off exposure to the virus.

What do we know about the vaccines’ efficacy?
The data submitted show that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have an efficacy of at least 90 percent after 2 doses. A vaccine efficacy of 90 percent means that the vaccine will protect 9 out of 10 individuals from contracting the infection. The data also show that vaccinated individuals have more mild symptoms if infected and didn’t need to be hospitalized as often.

Can the vaccinated person still spread COVID-19 once the vaccine takes effect?
We don’t have data on whether receiving the vaccine keeps you from spreading the virus to others. This means that everyone—whether they have received the vaccine or not—will need to continue to wear facemasks, practice physical distancing and good hand hygiene.

Is the vaccine safe? What is the science data behind it?
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are being distributed under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). An FDA committee granted an EUA for the Pfizer vaccine on Dec. 10, and the Moderna vaccine will be reviewed a week later. Our recommendations assume that both EUAs will be granted. In order for an EUA to be granted, the data submitted is rigorously reviewed by teams of FDA scientists.

What insights can you provide on any potential vaccine side effects for various populations—including the elderly and younger children?
We currently only have safety data from the short-term duration of the study trial. This means that we don’t know all of the potential side effects of the vaccine, particularly long-term side effects. We do know that the following have been reported as possible side effects which can last up to a week after receiving the vaccine:

• Pain and redness at the injection site
• Feeling tired and run down a day after receiving the vaccine
• Headache, muscle aches, chills, joint pains, or fever
• Possible allergic reaction in individuals with known allergies

At this time, vaccine trials including children, or pregnant or breastfeeding women have not been completed. Vaccines can affect children differently than adults, so further testing will be necessary to make sure any coronavirus vaccine is safe for children.

handful of recently vaccinated people in the United Kingdom have reported an allergic reaction after receiving the initial injection. This isn’t unusual. However, if you’re prone to severe allergic reactions from vaccines or injections, you should first consult with your physician before getting vaccinated

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MESSAGE FROM THE ADMINISTRATOR

December 1, 2020

Dear GARCC Residents, Families and Staff:

Kalo Mina and Happy Holidays,

In our effort to mitigate the spread of Covid 19, we are currently conducting PCR tests on our residents and staff twice a week and supplementing with rapid tests in between. By diagnosing before they have symptoms, we can quarantine and reduce the spread of the virus. We currently have 2 residents and 2 employees that tested positive for Covid and are in quarantine.

The holidays can be difficult times in a “normal” year, however, with COVID it can be almost overwhelming. Please don’t be discouraged and understand that we will get through this together and come out stronger for it. On a brighter note, we have been contacted by the CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) and will have access to a vaccine once it is approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). CVS pharmacy will be coming to our facility to offer the vaccine to both residents and staff. We will keep you posted with any new developments. Please check the website regularly for updates,

Hoping your Thanksgiving was a good one and December brings you happiness and good health as you celebrate the Holidays.

Best Regards,
Dino Varnavas
Administrator

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