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June 22 Update from our Chief Operating Officer: Seasons Celebrates Remarkable Residents

I hope everyone who celebrated had a wonderful Father’s Day weekend.

I am pleased to announce that later this week, we will be launching our annual Seasons Celebrates Remarkable Residents contest on the Seasons Facebook page. We had more than 100 entries this year and selecting this elite group of finalists and winners was very difficult. Thank you to everyone who entered and congratulations to these remarkable individuals:

WINNERS
Lucy Giangregorio, Seasons Brantford
John Eden, Seasons Dufferin Centre
Greta Blance, Seasons Stoney Creek
Marie Harrington, Seasons Drayton Valley
Fern Olson, Seasons Olds

FINALISTS
Elinor Mullen, Seasons Lethbridge
Ken Taylor, Seasons Lethbridge Gardens
Bernard Rempel, Seasons High River
Ursule Leboeuf, Seasons Belle River
Janet Carpenter, Seasons Amherstburg
Josie Anna Welter, Seasons Clarington
Betsy Rebel, Seasons Strathroy
Marjolaine Berry, Seasons Welland
Jarvis Wiuff, Seasons Camrose
Charles Milks, Seasons Royal Oak Village
Howard Old, Seasons Milton
Vernon Baker, Seasons Owen Sound
Violet Brant, Seasons Wetaskiwin
Morris Kozun, Seasons Ponoka
Tom Mirus, Seasons Olds Encore

The 2020 Remarkable Residents program looks differently than in years’ past as we could not film these important stories in person.  However, this remote storytelling did not impede the telling of these inspiring messages of hope, resiliency and giving back even when you have little yourself.  We decided not to hold a contest and ask for our followers’ votes this year; instead, we simply awarded the five winners with one month free rent.  We are asking our Facebook followers to like, share and comment on the videos so we can share your positive messages with our winners, who deserve all the love and accolades coming their way.

Please see below for province specific updates regarding COVID-19:

Alberta

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health is hosting a Telephone Town Hall to discuss the next steps for Alberta’s Visitor Policy.  As Alberta is entering into the next stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government would like your feedback from Supportive Living residents and families, as to what you consider most important regarding visits.  Residents and families were provided with an information flyer from Alberta Health, and are encouraged to speak with their General Manager if they have any questions.

I am pleased to share that all SL4/4D residents tested at Seasons Camrose tested negative for COVID-19. We are awaiting results for residents at Seasons Olds Encore and will share any updates as we receive them.

Ontario

Last week, all Seasons Retirement Communities in Ontario began a cautious, phased approach to permitting outdoor scheduled visits.  We received a lot of feedback and wanted to clarify a few points for you. First, Seasons is required to follow the directives set forth by the Ontario government regarding visits and residents leaving the premises.  For example, the requirement that visitors must attest to receiving a negative COVID-19 test within the previous two weeks’ of the visit, is a government mandate and not within Seasons’ control.

Second, many of you expressed concern over potential COVID-19 exposure risks, and we agree; the framework set up by the government makes leaving the premises with a loved one far easier than following rules about onsite visits.  This is concerning to us, too.

To the residents and families who are opting for this workaround: I encourage you to keep our collective safety in mind.  COVID-19 is a silent, insidious virus that is easily spread when we ignore directions to wear masks and stay six feet apart.

Furthermore, the Ontario Government directed that retirement home residents can leave the premises for short trips, but there are guidelines around these freedoms.  Residents leaving the premises must complete a health screening checklist upon their return to our home.  They must wear a mask at all times, practice physical distancing and proper hand hygiene.  If you are being picked up by a driver, residents are encouraged to sit in the backseat of the car on the passenger side, to facilitate good physical distancing.  Residents may not leave the premises if there is a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 in their retirement home.  Leaving the premises may be discouraged by Seasons or Public Health if there is wide-spread transmission in the greater, local community.

If just one resident has a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, local public health will immediately declare your home in outbreak and we will be required to shelter in suite, which means no leaving the premises or having visitors, stop meals in the dining rooms and cease group activities.

I implore you all to take this seriously by following the rules that keep our staff and residents safe. Further, for those who strongly disagree with the rules about leaving the premises or onsite visits, I would encourage you to contact your MPP or reach out to the Ontario Ministry of Health, or specifically the Ministry of Seniors and Accessibility, to make your concerns known.

The Ontario Government has also recommended that retirement home staff get tested for COVID-19 regularly.  Seasons supports this recommendation regarding regular testing for staff and we will send Team Members directions on how to access swabbing at local test centres.

Thank you all, in both Ontario and Alberta, for the trust you have placed in Seasons Retirement Communities.  We appreciate that whether you live or work with us, life at Seasons looks differently today than it did before this pandemic.  We appreciate the kind words, patience and commitment that you have shown in the effort to keep our residents and one another safe.

Sincerely,

LeighAnne Voll

COO, Seasons Retirement Communities

For additional online resources for COVID-19 you can visit the following sites:

Canada Health
Alberta Health
Alberta Health Services
Public Health Ontario
Retirement Home Regulatory Authority