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COVID-19 Updates & Visitation Guidelines

Updated 7/27/21:

Dear Family and Staff,

As in previous communications, it is our goal to communicate with you in a timely manner to keep you up to date on the Shannondale fight against COVID-19 and the efforts we are making against it.

Unfortunately, Shannondale Healthcare Center has a positive COVID-19 case as of today (July 27, 2021) and will have to stop visitation temporarily for a minimum of 2 weeks. This means NO activities, communal dining, or visitation. At this point, we do believe the exposure is minimal and this will be a minor setback. We will be testing the residents and staff once this week and once next week and again the following week.

We hope to resume visitation, activities, and communal dining as soon as possible in a safe way under our guidelines. With almost all our residents and a number of our staff receiving the vaccine, we believe Shannondale is on the correct path to re-opening in a safe manner. We believe that our Knox County community will continue its success in fighting COVID-19 and that will allow us to see you soon.


Keith McCord, VP-ADM


Dear Family/Staff Member,

Late in the evening on Wednesday, March 10, 2021, CMS announced for the first time since September new visitation guidelines.

Shannondale Healthcare Center’s “reopening plan” will begin on March 12, 2021 if everything continues to go well. Our residents will be able to return to some normalcy which includes family visits. Of course as usual, these visits may start and stop due to a case of Covid-19 within the facility per the CMS guidelines.

The following Core Principles must be followed or your opportunity to visit will cease:

  • Screening of all who enter the facility for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., temperature checks, questions or observations about signs or symptoms), and denial of entry of those with signs or symptoms
  • Hand hygiene (use of alcohol-based hand rub is preferred)
  • Face covering or mask (covering mouth and nose)
  • Social distancing at least six feet between individuals
  • Proper visitor education on COVID-19 signs and symptoms, infection control precautions, other applicable facility practices (e.g., use of face-covering or mask, specified entries, exits and routes to designated areas, hand hygiene)
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces in the facility often, and designated visitation areas after each visit

Please be aware that Covid-19 is still going around and there is still an opportunity for potential exposure to Covid. All visitation has to be conducted in the most responsible, respectable, and safest manner possible due to the Potential Exposure to Covid

Shannondale will begin family visitation starting Friday, March 12, 2021.

First, we encourage outdoor visitation because it is the safest way to visit your loved one. Shannondale’s policy for outdoor visitation will be:

  • Visitation hours are Monday through Saturday 10 AM to 4 PM
  • Visits should be kept to a maximum of 30 minutes
  • Only 2 family members will be allowed to visit at one time
  • No visits will be permitted during inclement weather

Indoor Visitation (resident room only) is now permitted.

  • Visitation hours are 7 days a week from 8 AM to 9 PM
  • All visitors must be screen at the front desk or designated area
  • Visits should be kept to a maximum of one hour
  • Only 2 family members will be allowed to visit at one time
  • Must go straight to the resident’s room- no leaving the room until visit is over – and then then directly exit the building. For example, visitors must not walk around different halls, visit different residents, gather or stop at nursing stations, or gather at the receptionist desk.

Thank you for your understanding during this difficult time, as we all work together to keep your loved ones and our staff safe. All visitation has to be conducted in the most responsible, respectable, and safest manner possible due to the risk of exposure to Covid.


Keith S. McCord, VP-ADM


We strive to provide transparent, accurate information on all aspects of COVID-19, including our prevention efforts that continue to develop with the latest clinical guidelines. In an effort to provide families and residents with open communication and up-to-date data, we are posting our numbers on a weekly basis.


In light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and out of an abundance of caution, Shannondale is taking every preventative and safety measure. We are following protocols from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), State Department of Health and the American Health Care Association. At Shannondale, we are putting residents first. We are honored and privileged to care for your loved one.

The following steps are being taken:

  • We are following CMS’ visitation guidelines (please view the above guidelines and instructions for more information on visitation)
  • All resident activities have been adjusted to meet CDC guidelines.
  • All employees are being screened for symptoms on a daily basis at beginning of shift.
  • We are following the highest cleanliness and sanitation standards and procedures.
  • Our teams are continually monitoring residents/staff for symptoms.
  • Employees are instructed to stay home if they are experiencing any illness or symptoms and are required to follow best practices to prevent possible exposure such as proper handwashing, respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette.
  • Daily training and updates are being provided to staff to ensure everyone is aware of the most current protocols.

How to Help Your Loved Ones:

Shannondale takes our residents’ health and social wellness seriously.  We are developing new activities and are ensuring every resident has interaction with our activities staff and other Shannondale staff.  Our goal, as always: keep residents happy and engaged. Especially, as we must follow visitation guidelines and access to your loved ones is limited at this time.

Residents enjoy receiving communication from their families and friends. These are a few ways you can keep your loved one feeling connected in between visits:

  • Call them – US Cellular donated mobile phones for the residents to use to talk to family members. Our staff can help you connect, just ask one of our employees.
  • Send a card – mail directly to the community with their name on the envelope
  • Film a video or record a message they can watch. Email to: marketing.dept@shannondaletn.org.
  • Send (or drop off at the front desk) books to read or activity books like crossword puzzles or word searches. We will ensure they receive your care package.
  • This statement will be updated and adjusted as needed to ensure compliance with federal and state protocols.

If you usually pick up incoming mail for your loved one, please contact us to arrange for pick up: Knoxville – (865) 690-3411 or Maryville – (865) 982-4599.

Share a Smile Project:

We understand the limited visitation in place to protect your loved ones is difficult during this time. To prevent our valued residents from feeling lonely, isolated or sad, our team is doing everything in its power to spark smiles on their faces. Through our #ShareASmileProject, we’re finding creative ways that both our team and the community can engage and share smiles with residents. For example, our staff has enjoyed brightening peoples’ day with dress-up themes like Tie-Dye Day or Crazy Hat Day or handing out special treats. Also, through our special project, community members can Share a Smile three different ways: by mailing cards, sharing a fun video or sharing an encouraging post on social media. To learn more about how you can be involved in the #ShareASmileProject during this time, click here.

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