Live Update to Residents-April 21, 2020

Daily Live updates to residents on our in-house TV970 have become a popular way for us to stay in touch while social distancing! Today’s update featured John Burns, President and CEO; Will Blackwell, Vice President Health Services; Debra Jacobsen, Administrator Resident Services; Jessica Goldberg, Manager Courtesy Services; Taryn Young and Julie McElduff, Fitness Specialists; and Logan Augustine, Chaplain.

The following updates were shared during the live briefing on TV970.

John Burns

Globally, there have been more than 2.4 million cases of COVID-19 and 163,097 deaths according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In the United States today, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) there are 746,625 confirmed cases of COVID-19. There have been 39,083 deaths. As of this morning, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reports:

• 58,354 people have been tested for COVID-19.

• There have been 640 new positive cases since yesterday. Total positive COVID-19 cases in Virginia are 9,630.

• 1,581 have been hospitalized

• 324 total deaths

• 1,418 have recovered, including 94 since yesterday

• We have 621 cases in Henrico County, the fourth highest in Virginia. There are 246 in the City of Richmond, 346 in Chesterfield County and 93 in Hanover County.

Resident Banner

All employees were greeted by a wonderful banner at the front gate thanking all staff for their hard work and dedication. Thank you to the Executive Committee of the Residents Association for making this happen.

Employee Update

All four employees who tested positive for COVID-19 are improving and have been under quarantine long enough that today, they received the first of two tests to confirm that they are no longer contagious. We hope to see them back at work soon.

Will Blackwell

Parsons Health Center Update

On Sunday, April 19, CMS sent out a new memo requiring facilities to be more transparent. We are required to notify the Department of Health of any positive COVID-19 cases in any resident or employee in Parsons Health Center.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Westminster Canterbury Richmond has been committed to transparency regarding our preparation and response. We follow the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Virginia Department of Health (VDH) as we care for your loved ones.

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. 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.

Westminster Canterbury Richmond 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. Our clinical staff are professional, prepared, confident, competent and ready to provide care for this type of infectious disease. They are fully trained in isolation procedures and use of personal protective equipment (PPE). We have had no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Assisted Living or Parsons Health Center residents. Our four employees are doing well and recovering at home. We will continue to keep you informed of any new cases in the future.

Independent Living Clinic Update

Beginning April 21, residents who receive regular clinic services will come to the Clinic by appointment. Regular clinic services include application of compression hose, wound care, other treatments, eye drop administration, allergy injections, vitamin injections, immunizations such as Shingrix and CLIA testing (INR, HemoPoint), as well as collecting samples for testing. You must call the Clinic at ext. 6231 first for an appointment. We will not take walk-ins. Practitioner visits will continue by appointment only.

Debra Jacobsen

Primary Elections

A mutual decision has been made between Westminster Canterbury Richmond and Henrico County to not hold the Dual Primary Elections scheduled for Tuesday, June 23, 2020, on our campus. Because we are do not allow visitors on campus at this time, we cannot commit to holding the election here and allowing outside staff members and volunteers to work the polls. At least four other communities have made the same decision under the guidance of Henrico County. Residents will be given the opportunity to fill out a paper Absentee Ballot application or may submit it electronically to the Voter Registration Office no later than Tuesday, June 16. Once received, you will be sent a paper ballot through the mail to be completed. Please read The Tales for complete details on this process. If you have any questions, please call Resident Services at ext. 6082 or the social worker in your area of residency.


When you are working in your garden plots, please remember to maintain a social distance of at least six feet from one another. Cloth masks are available for residents. Call Resident Services at ext. 6082, and Emily Williamson will place a mask in your box at the Center or Tower desk.


Mail services from the USPS resumed today. Tower, Center and Assisted Living residents may pick up their mail from their usual mailboxes.

Jessica Goldberg

The Transportation Department wants to remind residents about the guidelines for two programs that bring groceries to residents.

Grocery Deliveries from Family Members or Friends at Azalea Parking Lot

• Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 1-3 p.m., family and friends may drop off groceries to the bus drivers at the Azalea Parking Lot near the Azalea Garden Center. Our Transportation drivers and a crew of staff volunteers receive and deliver these items to residents’ doors.

• It is easiest if the groceries are in brown paper bags. Bags must be labeled with resident names and apartment numbers. Please ask family and friends to avoid packing heavy bags and fragile items like vases.

• Transportation will take reusable bags/cooler bags to be picked up by your family members during the Azalea process. Please leave these bags at the Tower or Center Desks labeled with the name of the recipient. Any items you may want to return to family through the Azalea process should be approved by calling Jessica Goldberg at ext. 5107.

Grocery Orders

• You may place PHONE orders from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. each weekday by calling ext. 6262. You cannot leave a message, so please keep trying. Once we have reached our order capacity for the week, we turn off the grocery phone line, and you may call again beginning the next Monday morning.

• You may send an EMAIL order anytime to Please provide your name, apartment number and phone number in your email.

• Limit your list to 15 items. Do your best to categorize items by Produce, Dairy, Meat, Canned, Frozen, etc. to help our shoppers be more efficient. Let us know if you will accept substitutions for an item.

• We can shop for 20 people each weekday, or about 100 per week.

• Every weekday morning, a transportation driver and a rotating crew of five staff volunteers shop and deliver your groceries. We are currently shopping at the Walmart Neighborhood Market because it is relatively uncrowded, relatively well stocked and not too big.

• Due to high demand, turnaround for receiving your groceries could take one to four days. Thank you for your patience.

• Resident accounts will be charged.

• Because there is limited capacity for the Grocery Orders, if you can, please make use of the Grocery Deliveries from Family Members or Friends or order from Dining’s new Pantry service by calling ext. 1510.

Thank you to the many employees who have helped with the grocery order taking, shopping and delivery, including Transportation Supervisor Ethan Wilburn, Jessica Corbitt and Zach Townsend for their organization and oversight of the grocery line program.

Taryn Young and Julie McElduff – Wellness

Watch the video for a demonstration of seated core exercises.

Logan Augustine – Pastoral Care

Live chapel services will resume at 10:30 a.m. on Thursdays on TV970. The bulletin will be in The Tales, at the Tower and Center Desks and on Touchtown Community Apps.

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:

“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”

And he replied:

“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.

That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”

So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.

And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

(Excerpt from a poem by Minnie Louise Haskins in 1908, quoted by King George VI in his 1939 Christmas broadcast at the beginning of World War II.)


Gracious God, we thank you that you travel the unknown way with us. We thank you that in the midst of uncertainty, we find that you are present with us. We know that you travel the road next to us and you guide us. When we feel frustrated, uncertain, angry, or fearful, help us to reach out – to reach out our hand into the darkness, and place our hand into yours. For you alone are our comfort and our strength. May we continue to walk alongside you as you guide us to the breaking of a new day. All of this we pray in your name. Amen.

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