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October 13 Update from our Chief Operating Officer: Alert and High Alert Areas

While this Thanksgiving looked different than in years past, I do hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend.  I am pleased to advise that there are no Seasons Retirement Communities in COVID-19 outbreak at this time.

As Ontario moves into a second wave of COVID-19, the provincial government has developed a risk-based response system to continue to balance retirement home resident and staff safety and overall well-being.   For the retirement home sector, the Ontario government has established elevated alert areas (Alert and High Alert) based on the degree of COVID-19 transmission in a community and infection spread within retirement homes in the area.

Once per week, the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority (RHRA) will notify retirement residences of their alert level, which will result in infection prevention and control IPAC restrictions.  Please see the summary chart below:

Scenario Alert High Alert
General Visitor Maximum of 1 Not permitted
Essential Visitor

(Designated Family/Support Person/Caregiver)

Maximum of 1 Maximum of 1
Hairdresser Not permitted Not permitted
Leaving the Retirement Residence Essential appointments and needs only

No overnight absences

Essential appointments and needs only

No overnight absences

Social activities Not permitted Not permitted

We have been notified that the following homes are considered to be under “Alert Status”

      • Seasons Welland
      • Seasons Stoney Creek
      • Seasons Clarington

In keeping with recent revisions to the Visitation Directives that are to take effect in Ontario today, October 13, 2020, Seasons has updated its Safe Visit policy and definitions.  It is our hope that together, we can ensure that our residents and team members remain safe while maintaining access to those that are in greatest need.

Seasons remains committed to Indoor, Outdoor and Extenuating Visits.  We are expanding our policy to add a Designated Family/Support Person/Caregiver.  One such individual may continue to visit during alert and high alert status.

Designated Family/Support Person/Caregiver

They may be a family member, friend, companion (privately paid or volunteer), support worker (privately paid or volunteer), power of attorney/trustee, agent, legal guardian, or any other person identified.  A reminder that this type of “visitor” would be deemed essential and as such, provides direct care which may include:

      • Supporting feeding
      • Mobility
      • Personal hygiene
      • Cognitive stimulation
      • Communication
      • Meaningful connection
      • Relational continuity
      • Assistance in decision making

The Designated Family/Support Person/Caregiver MUST:

      • Be identified by the resident and/or substitute decision-maker
      • Schedule all visits ahead of time
      • Remain consistent
      • Be educated in all IPAC protocols, specifically donning & doffing of PPE
      • Adhere to all IPAC protocols or risk being declined further visits

Please speak with your General Manager should you have any questions about the new alert status or assigning someone as a Designated Family/Support Person/Caregiver.

We have started to receive the influenza vaccine for Seasons staff and residents.  We encourage everyone, including families and visitors, to consider getting the flu shot early this year to avoid a potential ‘twindemic’ of Influenza and COVID-19.

Thank you, Seasons Team Members, for your unwavering commitment to the health and safety of our residents and your fellow team members.  We see the work you are doing each day and it matters; you are truly making an impact on the lives of others and we appreciate all of your efforts.

Residents and families, thank you for your patience, understanding and kindness shown to our team members – it means a lot.  There is no greater priority than the health, safety and well-being of our staff and residents.

Thank you all for the trust you continue to place in Seasons Retirement Communities.  As always, we take this responsibility very seriously.

Sincerely,

LeighAnne Voll
Chief Operating Officer

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