Live Update to Residents – May 12, 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; Sharon Poznanczyk, Director of Nursing; and Lynn McClintock, Director Pastoral Care.

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

John Burns

As of this morning, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reports:

  • 171,239 people have been tested for COVID-19, up 3,481 but still sadly lacking the numbers needed to safely re-open our society
  • Total positive cases are 25,800, an increase of 730
  • Percent positive of those tested is 15%, which is up slightly from yesterday, but still down overall
  • 3,395 total hospitalizations over the course of the pandemic
  • 891 total deaths, an increase of 41 overnight

Yesterday’s briefing emphasized the hazards of connecting with family at the fence, as the most common form of spread is amongst family. After our briefing yesterday, we learned of four more Westminster Canterbury employees who have tested positive for COVID-19.

The most important message here is that there is no risk of these four employees having transmitted the virus to anyone here at Westminster Canterbury. All four of these employees work in our Dining Department and are members of the same family. In early April, they requested an extended leave from work for family reasons. They have not been on campus in more than 20 days. None of them developed symptoms of COVID-19 until two weeks or more after the last time they were on campus.

The good news is that all of them are recovering in quarantine at home. Sadly, as many as eight or nine people in their family have now tested positive, and a member of their extended family, who was not a Westminster Canterbury employee, passed away due to COVID-19 a couple of weeks ago.

It is possible for us and for members of our own families to be carrying the virus and not know it, and in turn, transmit the virus to others. This is why we continue emphasizing the potential dangers of meeting up with your families and why we continue prohibiting visits on campus. The risk of spreading the virus between family members remains high. By and large, our society outside the fence is not compliant with health precautions, and we must continue to mitigate the risk to our residents and employees.

Honorary Flyover

This evening, a special event will occur in the skies near Westminster Canterbury. The Air Combat F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team and Air Force Heritage Flight will fly over Central and Eastern Virginia today to salute everyone on the frontlines in the COVID-19 fight. The flyover will take off from Joint Base Langley-Eustis near Newport News and will proceed north to Richmond before returning south through Williamsburg, Newport News, Hampton and Norfolk and will finish in Virginia Beach. The flyover is expected to be over Richmond at approximately 6:30 this evening.

You are welcome to go outside to watch this. If you are observing from a public area inside or outside, please maintain social distancing of six feet or more. As always, we encourage you to wear a mask if you are outside your apartment.

Sharon Poznanczyk – Director of Nursing

(In honor of National Nurses Week, Sharon shared remarks about the contributions of all nursing staff to Westminster Canterbury Richmond and to the greater community. Watch the video to see the special tribute to nursing staff celebrating the end of National Nurses Week.)

During National Nurses Week, we wish to thank, honor and celebrate our nursing staff at Westminster Canterbury Richmond. National Nurses Day is on May 12, in honor of Florence Nightingale’s birthday. Florence Nightingale was born 200 years ago today, and she is known as the founder of modern nursing. She is best known for redefining nursing as an honored profession.

The COVID-19 pandemic has again redefined nursing. The year 2020 has been designated as the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife, by the World Health Organization. Countries all over the world are acknowledging the contributions nursing staff make to the health of their communities.

Nurses are leading and teaching teams in infection prevention and control. At Westminster Canterbury, our nurses and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) are selflessly providing loving care in hot gowns and masks for the sake of our beloved residents. Our nursing team is a source of professional, caring knowledge, not only for our residents, but also for their families, neighbors and the greater community.

During the COVID-19 crisis, all Westminster Canterbury staff are showing great teamwork. Some staff from other departments have volunteered for training so they may safely assist with feeding residents in the Parsons Health Center. Residents and staff are making much-needed cloth masks. Our spirits are always lifted when we receive letters of encouragement from the residents and family members showing their gratitude and letting everyone know that their selflessness does not go unnoticed.

We have had the tremendous leadership of our CEO, Executive Team, RN Infection Preventionist and Incident Command Team ensuring that we are the leaders in the industry of how to do things right, how to recognize needed change and how to execute change on a moment’s notice.

To all the nursing staff at Westminster Canterbury, thank you for your service and dedication. You are truly heroes and angels to our residents and their families.

Lynn McClintock – Pastoral Care


Gracious and loving God, on this very special moment in the life of Westminster Canterbury, we give you thanks for our wonderful Health Care Staff and all our nursing staff.  We especially lift up this week our nurses and CNAs–and all our healthcare workers–who have dedicated themselves to providing healing and comfort to the suffering.

Even though this year, we cannot bless their hands with oil, we ask you to bless their hands through your Spirit—today and every day–hands that are scrubbed and sanitized to the point of weakening skin– hands that handle complex medical procedures and hands that provide the simple, wordless comfort when reaching out to hold the hand of a resident.  Lord, bless their shoulders—shoulders that are carrying heavy burdens of concern—concern for the health of our residents and for their own safety and the safety of their own families.  Make their shoulders broad and sturdy, Lord, so that when the responsibilities of the day weigh down on them—they may feel you lifting them up to places of strength.   Bless their feet, as they are constantly moving from bedsides to dining rooms to nurses stations—give their aching feet rest from the physical demands of the day.   Bless their minds, loving God—as they deal with the stress of adapting to new protocols and minds that so need the calming of your spirit.  Let their minds rest in the peace that only you can give. And, Lord, bless their hearts—hearts that are so full of love that they rise above and push on through even when those hearts are breaking from concern and fatigue.

Gracious God, we give you thanks for the incredible spirit and dedication of our healthcare workers. Thank you for the way the way that they reassure families who cannot see their loved ones, the way that they inspire us all to persevere and to keep a positive attitude, and the way they live out TWCW—The Westminster Canterbury Way—day in and day out.

Even though we cannot celebrate them in grand fashion in the theater this year, may they each know that they are cherished and loved, valued and appreciated.  You have made each one of them precious in your sight, and let them know that they are precious in ours.

May your love sustain them, your peace surround them and your Holy Spirit inspire them in the living of these days.  Amen.

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