COVID Health Care Center

COVID Health Care Center

Healthy Camp Begins at Home

Partnering (buy-in) with YOU, regarding Policies/Procedures before camp will be crucial to a safe, successful summer.   The health and welfare of your child, will be the only cause for rigidity in our planning.

The health and safety of your daughter, and the entire camp community,  is of utmost importance. In preparation for summer 2021.  Fernwood Cove will be following the COVID-19 Prevention Checklist established by the State Of Maine for overnight summer camps.  We will continually update and adapt to guidance issued by the State of Maine and Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We will also be referencing the American Camp Association Field Guide for Camps on the implementation of CDC guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In this section of the Parent Resource Book we will provide you with an outline of procedures to follow at home in order to facilitate daughters’ safe arrival to camp. 

Outline of Health and Safety Policies, Protocol, and Procedures

The Fernwood Cove Health Care Team, Directors, and in close collaboration with Dr. Laura Blaisdell, has developed health and safety policies, protocols, and procedures which are guided by the latest developments in state and federal health and safety mandates and guidelines, as well as by best practices in public health. These health and safety policies and protocols will include, but will not be limited to:

  • mask-wearing
  • physical distancing
  • Utilizing outdoor space
  • density controls
  • hygiene practices
  • cleaning and sanitization
  • daily health screening
  • testing
  • cohorting 
  • Quarantine
  • Isolation

Campers and staff will receive education and training to ensure understanding of such policies and protocols, as well as the importance of compliance.

Health considerations

It is important to recognize there is added risk of exposure to Covid-19 in a residential setting. It is your responsibility to check with your daughter’s physician to ensure that Fernwood Cove is an appropriate setting and assess if your daughter is in a high risk category related to COVID-19.  If your daughter is in a high risk category please contact us.

Before Camp Monitoring

The goal is to begin the camp season with the healthiest camp family possible. In order to achieve this, we ask each individual to do their part.
Campers must:
1. Daily Pre- screen for 10 Day’s prior to camps start date. During the home pre-screening time, we will ask you to monitor your daughters health daily. Families will be asked to log this information daily. If your daughter presents with any of the symptoms below during the pre-screening period, we will require your daughter to remain at home until symptoms resolve and ask you to call camp. The pre-screening document will consist of general questions, daily temperature checks and evaluating for the following symptoms:

Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle Pain
Sore throat
New loss of taste or smell

2. Low-Risk Behavior- It will be important during this 10 day screening period to incorporate low-risk behavior. Low risk behaviors are those that can be done outdoors and/or with masking and physical distancing. Campers should only be unmasked with immediate household family members during this time, specifically not eating in restaurants or other eating venues with individuals outside their family unit. Large gatherings of groups outside the family household are not recommended; this includes weddings, graduations, religious gatherings, parties and playdates. Attending school, where masking and distancing is diligently employed, has not been shown to increase risk of COVID-19 and may be considered a low risk behavior during this time. Camper parents are encouraged to discuss their pre-camp plans with camp directors should there be any question. 

3. Testing- A negative COVID-19 test (during the pre-screening period), will be required prior to your daughter attending camp. We will be requiring a Test 5-7 days prior to the camp’s start date.

4. Shelter-in-place- After the Covid-19 test is taken we will be asking camper’s to shelter in place, prior to travel to Camp. The duration of the shelter in place period is dependent on testing prior to camp, further information will be provided closer to the start of camp.

COVID-19 Vaccination

It is still unknown if a vaccination will be available for youth prior to the camp season. There has been no guidance issued in regards to vaccinations and our current planning does not take into account vaccinated campers/staff.  We will continue to monitor vaccination options and adapt as necessary. 

Health Screening – Arrival at Camp

Campers will have a health screening prior to arrival at Camp administered by a Fernwood Cove staff member or representative.  If a camper is showing symptoms and/or tests positive – the following procedures will be implemented: 

  1. Parent(s) Are Present – Parents will be asked to take their camper to be screened for COVID-19.  
    1. Results are positive for COVID-19 – Return home with camper to isolate at home for 10 days and then return camper to Fernwood Cove.
    2. Results are negative for COVID-19 – Return home with camper and shelter in place.  Return camper to Fernwood Cove 24 hours after symptoms resolve.
  2. Parents are NOT Present –  Camper will be tested for COVID-19 per Fernwood Coves Testing Policy.
    1. Results are positive for COVID-19  – Camper(s) will isolate at camp for 10 days.  Isolation will include other positive campers/staff as well as having an Isolation Activity Schedule.
    2. Results are negative for COVID-19 – Camper(s) will remain in the Healthcare Center until 24 hours after symptoms resolve. 

We will continue to use symptom and temperature screenings frequently throughout the summer. When your camper returns home, we will again ask you to check her daily for symptoms and suggest you follow CDC guidelines.

What does cohorting look like at camp? 

One of the strategies in mitigating Covid-19 is the concept of cohorting. In order to reduce the possible spread of the virus it is recommended to divide into the smallest practical group. The smallest practical group will be the “Bunk family”. Masks will not need to be worn when campers are with their Bunk Family. 

Cohort that will consist of Age-groups. Campers will travel to activities in their age-groups. If physical distancing is not possible, a mask will be worn. We also have Units 2-5th and 6th-9th. Cohorting can be expanded or decreased depending on the health of the community.

If a camper becomes sick with COVID-19, what will happen?

We are doing everything we can to prevent Covid-19 in Camp this summer, however we are prepared for positive cases.  If a camp occupant develops symptoms consistent with COVID-19, we will triage them and arrange for testing. Camper parents will be notified for any stay (per usual) in the Health Care Center.  If a test is positive, the Health Care Team will care for all needs.

Fernwood Cove will have a safe and comfortable onsite area for any camp member who may need to be isolated.  Any Camper in isolation will be provided with activities to keep them busy and occupied. They will be cared for by members of the Healthcare team until symptoms resolve for more than 10 days, they will be assessed and then return to their bunk family.   

Staff living at camp who test positive for COVID-19 or demonstrate COVID-19 symptoms, like campers, will be isolated with the same protocols as we would with campers. 

Contact Tracing

When a positive case is identified at camp, our nursing staff, in concert with Dr. Blaidsdell, will engage in contract tracing efforts to identify close contacts. Close contacts will be quarantined at camp until a negative test result can be determined.

What happens to my daughter if her bunk-mate tests positive with Covid-19? 

We have organized Camp into ‘Bunk families’ to help minimize exposure and spread of infectious disease, however, we realize that within a ‘Bunk Family’’ exposures may occur.  Potentially exposed ‘Bunk families’  cabins will be cleaned according to CDC guidance, they will receive increased surveillance and mitigation measures (e.g. strict physical distancing from other ‘Bunk families’), and may be quarantined until we are certain that everyone is healthy. 

Mask Wearing

Our planning will allow campers to operate without a face mask for the majority of their time.  Wherever possible, campers will be partnered or grouped by “Bunk Family”.  Should a camper be grouped in activity by cohort, physical distancing measures will first be implemented.  If physical distancing is not possible, a mask will be worn. 

To allow for the widest selection of activities for all campers, staff members may be required to lead some activities while wearing a mask. Masks will not be used while sleeping, when they could cause difficulty breathing or when in the water.  Camp will make masks a mandatory item on the packing list. We recommend 9 masks, one for each day of the week with spares, and they will be washed each week on laundry day. If your family is unable to procure masks, please let us know so we can help.

What type of mask should my child be wearing? 

COVID-19 can be spread to others even if you do not feel sick. A face mask helps prevent a person who is sick from spreading the virus to others. Appropriate and consistent use of face masks by campers, counselors, and staff are an important way to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

  • The mask should have 2 or more layers of washable, breathable fabric
  • The mask should completely cover the mouth and nose
  • The mask should fit snugly against the face, without gaps
  • Masks should be changed when they are wet or soiled and changed daily

Maintaining Physical Distance

We know  physical connection and proximity are important to how campers interact with each other. Each bunk will be a ‘Bunk family’ and will operate much like a regular family household. Physical distancing will be utilized between ‘Bunk families’ however each bunk family will have opportunities to be with their age groups during activities by using a combination of physical distancing and masking when physical distancing can not be maintained.  

Campers Requiring Hospitalization

If a camper requires hospitalization the parent will be notified. The camper will be transported to Bridgton Hospital, Stephen’s Memorial Hospital or Central Maine Medical Center for further care. A Director or staff member will remain with the camper for the duration of her care until she returns to camp.