COVID-19 Update

The following memo was shared on May 7, 2020.


John Burns, President and CEO

Will Blackwell, Vice President Health Services

Sloan Verlander, Assisted Living Administrator


Assisted Living Employee Tested Positive for COVID-19

On Thursday, May 7, 2020, Westminster Canterbury Richmond learned that an Assisted Living employee tested positive for COVID-19. The employee was asymptomatic until Tuesday, May 5, when she experienced a loss of smell. She was tested on Tuesday, May 5, and received her positive test results on Thursday, May 7. A family member from her household had previously tested positive. This employee works the night shift in Pavilion.

Upon learning of the positive test result, Westminster Canterbury required all residents of Pavilion to enter mandatory quarantine. Our Registered Nurse Infection Preventionist is developing a plan for testing potentially exposed residents and employees in coordination with the Virginia Department of Health (VDH). We are tracking all interactions that the employee may have had with other residents and employees. 19 residents live in Pavilion, and this employee’s interaction with them during the overnight shift was minimal. All staff have been wearing personal protective equipment diligently, further minimizing the risk of exposure. Our Housekeeping team has been disinfecting surfaces regularly and is completing a thorough cleaning of all Pavilion public spaces.

As a reminder, so far, Westminster Canterbury has had confirmed cases of COVID-19 in two residents and four employees. The two residents live in Independent Living, received treatment in the hospital and returned home to recover in Mary Morton Parsons Health Center. Both have tested negative for COVID-19. Four employees tested positive for COVID-19 after self-quarantining off campus due to symptoms. They have since recovered, tested negative for COVID-19 twice and returned to work. Two worked in Housekeeping, one in Security and one in Dining.

Since the beginning of March, a Coronavirus Task Force comprised of staff from various departments, including an RN Infection Preventionist, met to review existing policies and procedures related to infectious diseases and to plan for other concerns. We follow the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and VDH. A Coronavirus Incident Command team meets at least six days a week and additionally as needed to address the latest changes and needs. All residents remain under self-quarantine measures. Every employee is screened with questions and a temperature check upon arrival to campus, prior to reporting to work. Since early April, all employees wear masks at all times to reduce the risk of asymptomatic spread of the virus. We are working diligently to keep our residents and employees healthy.

As we continue to investigate and respond to this new case, we will share updates.

• The latest news is always available on our blog at

• Currently, we do live video updates on our in-house TV970 station on weekdays at 3 p.m. and other times as needed. The updates include the latest news from John Burns, information on services being provided to residents and family members, and wellness and pastoral care moments to lift our spirits.

• Recordings of the live video updates are available later on the blog at, at, or hourly on TV971 for those on campus.

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