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Coronavirus Information and Resources

The health and safety of our community are always at the forefront of our work. As information rapidly develops around the public health threat posed by COVID-19, we will continue to respond, communicate, and implement policies as needed.

Below are some questions and answers about the coronavirus called COVID-19 and how we are preparing as a community. Clinical and infection control responses are based on Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and North Carolina Statewide Program for Infection Control and Epidemiology (NCSPICE) guidelines.

What is coronavirus?

This strain of coronavirus, now named COVID-19 by the CDC, is a new (novel) strain of the coronavirus group. COVID-19 originated in Wuhan, China, a city that is likened in size and population to Chicago.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms range from mild to severe respiratory illness, most frequently with fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Fever may not present until after other symptoms have been present for several days. Symptom management of COVID-19 is available.

How is COVID-19 spread?

Spread of this illness is mainly through close person-to-person contact (about a 6 ft. distance) via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

What is The Forest at Duke doing to prepare?

We have an Infection Prevention Team that coordinates preparedness and response for the entire community.


Visitors / Visitation Information

Effective Friday, March 13, 2020, at 12:00 p.m. and until further notice, The Forest at Duke is suspending all visitation. The only exceptions will be for those who are gravely ill or currently enrolled in hospice care. Those exceptions must be approved by the Director of Health Services.

Family members who are taking residents to physician appointments may pick them up via the front entrance but may not enter the building. Family members may also pick residents up directly from their cottage homes.

Some residents have expressed the desire to go off campus with their family for extended visits. While we cannot stop them from doing so, we do ask that they consider not returning to campus until further guidance from The Forest at Duke. If that is not possible, we ask that they please self-isolate upon their return. While they may not be sick, they could have been exposed and they could be a carrier, which could put others at risk.

Unwinding Modified Operations for Independent Living

Effective Friday, May 22, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. — The health and safety of residents and team members remains a top priority at The Forest. Our reopening plan has many phases and is intentionally taking a more cautious approach than Governor Cooper’s plan, due to the high vulnerability of our campus resident population. The Health & Wellness Center will remain with full, restricted operations in accordance with federal and state requirements until further notice.

The Forest at Duke’s Leadership Team will continue to assess conditions for each phase of reopening to decide whether to move to the next phase, retain that phase for an extended duration, or even regress to a prior phase, if conditions dictate. The decisions will be continuously evaluated and communicated with our residents and team members, using every means at our disposal.


Resident Notifications

To keep The Forest community well informed, updates will be distributed to residents via Channel 1390, TouchTown screens, Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS), and our brightly colored notices, as well as email, when possible.


If you have questions about the coronavirus, the following websites offer comprehensive information:

CDC: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

NC Division of Public Health

The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine: AMDA Update on COVID-19