Live Update to Residents-May 7, 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; Debra Jacobsen, Administrator Resident Services; Ethan Wilburn, Transportation Supervisor; Lynn McClintock, Director Pastoral Care; and Rainey Dankel, resident.

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

John Burns

This morning, we learned that an Assisted Living employee tested positive for COVID-19. This 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. Residents and their family members in Pavilion have been notified.

Upon learning of the positive test result, we are requiring all residents of Pavilion to be in mandatory quarantine. Tracey Powell, our Infection Preventionist, is coordinating a plan for testing potentially exposed residents and employees. We should have test results in about 24 to 36 hours. We are tracing all interactions that the employee may have had with other residents and employees. Nineteen 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. Housekeeping has been disinfecting surfaces diligently and today is completing a thorough disinfection cleaning of Pavilion.

We have had two confirmed resident cases of COVID-19 and five employee cases. 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. A total of five employees have tested positive for COVID-19. Before returning to work all positive staff must test negative for COVID-19 twice. We will share more information as soon as we have it. Read the memo with more details here.

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

• 136,558 people have been tested for COVID-19, with 8,620 tests since yesterday.

• Total positive COVID-19 cases are 21,570 with 1,314 new cases.

• 2,995 hospitalizations

• 769 total deaths

• There are 150 outbreaks in long-term care facilities in Virginia, up seven from Tuesday.

Yesterday, we suggested that all residents wear masks. We require staff, contractors and anyone else on campus to wear masks. There are two primary reasons:

1. Masks are our best defense from spreading the virus if anyone has been exposed. This morning’s news of a new positive case in an employee is proof that we cannot get complacent.

2. When the data shows that residents may leave campus again in the future, masks will be required in public. We recommend wearing a mask on campus now in order to grow accustomed to wearing one. This will be necessary for the foreseeable future.

Many residents are uncomfortable being around other residents who are not wearing a mask, so we recommend having one with you when you are outdoors and wearing it when around other residents, staff or contractors. Use an abundance of caution and assume everyone has been exposed to COVID-19.

Debra Jacobsen

Medical Appointments

When you go to a medical appointment in a medical office with our Transportation, you will not be quarantined for 14 days. If you go to a hospital for a procedure, emergency room visit or hospital stay, or other appointment in the hospital, you will be quarantined for 14 days.


Thank you for your patience as we refine our process for ordering groceries from Publix. The ext. 6262 grocery line is open at 9 a.m., five days a week, and accepts 25 orders each day. Phone orders are delivered the next business day. Beginning on Monday, you may email your request to Email orders will have a slower turn-around time but will be filled in the order they are received. We also ask that you order once per week to make room for more residents.

Publix receipts were made in the register’s “training mode,” so there is a capital letter “T” to the left of the prices and the total. Some have thought this was a “1,” reflecting a much higher total than what was actually charged. Please call Jess Goldberg at ext. 5107 if you have trouble reading your receipt.

Ethan Wilburn

Ethan is the new Transportation Supervisor. He shared a behind-the-scenes look at what the Transportation and Front Desk teams have been working on during the COVID-19 pandemic.

There was a period of time when our employees went to the Post Office every weekday to retrieve mail so that employee volunteers could deliver it to residents. Thank you to everyone who was involved in this time-consuming process. Our regular postal carrier is now delivering mail again.

Ethan may be reached from 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. at ext. 6263 to address transportation questions and needs.

To request Transportation to medical appointments, fill out the blue Transportation Request form completely and turn it in at either the Center or Tower Desks. Blank forms may be found at both desks. If you live in The Glebe or Homes on the Green, Transportation can deliver or pick them up through the internal mail. Confirmation will be sent to your in-house mailbox. If possible, please give at least 48 hours’ notice for appointments.

We are also providing transportation to banks and financial institutions. For your safety, we do not exit the vehicle. All business is conducted through the drive-thru or through the vehicle window. If you are not sure if your bank provides drive-thru service, please contact your bank prior to scheduling a trip with Transportation.

Regular fees apply for every medical and personal trip. If you have a mask, please wear it. If you do not have one, we will provide one. Our drivers sanitize their vehicles between appointments.

The grocery shuttle at the Azalea Mall lot has been a success! We set up three tables at the lot – one for drop offs and two for pickups. Two buses run every 15 minutes. A staff volunteer serves as a lot attendant, who helps the drivers load all of the items onto the buses. Another driver helps deliver items to The Glebe and Homes on the Green. From the Azalea lot, the drivers stop at both the Center and Tower Entrances where staff volunteers wait for the items and deliver them to the residents. Please limit drop-off items to groceries and small items. Large or heavy items are difficult for our staff to manage. For items being returned to Azalea for pickup by your family or friends, they may be brought to either the Center or Tower Desks before noon on Monday, Wednesday or Friday. Please have these items clearly labeled for whomever is picking them up, and include what day they are being picked up. Since the City of Richmond is currently in the process of milling and repaving Westbrook Avenue, there are temporary road closures. For Azalea access, it is most convenient for them to enter and exit the lot from Brook Road. Please pass this information to your family and friends.

Changing our grocery shopping to our new process with Publix has allowed the five or six staff volunteers who were shopping at Walmart to volunteer in other vital roles. Drivers are more available for medical appointments and bank trips. Safety is always our number one priority, and it is especially important during this time.

Thank you to many people who have been involved in these new processes:

• Transportation drivers: George Angle, Harold Dickerson, Brad Morrison, Betsy Murphy, John Samford, Tony Talbott, Mary Wiltshire and Debra Winston.

• Grocery Request process team: Jessica Corbitt and Zach Townsend, Cultural Arts; and Jessica Goldberg, Manager Courtesy Services.

• Center and Tower Desk staff: Helen Armstrong, David Ballas, Joyce Crews, Jessica Hamway, Constance Hawkins, Deborah Stewart, Brenda Stone and Dawn Taylor.

• Resident Services team: Sarah Everette, Debra Jacobsen, Emily Krause and Emily Williamson.

• All the staff volunteers who help shop for and deliver groceries.

Thoughtful Thursday

Lynn McClintock

Evening Prayer time will change beginning Friday, May 8, to 6:15 p.m. on TV970. Thursdays’ Live Updates will include a “Thoughtful Thursdays” segment featuring resident clergy. Today featured resident clergy Rev. Rainey Dankel, Resident and Interim Associate Rector, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Richmond.

Rainey Dankel

Psalm 63:1, 7-8

God you are my God; eagerly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my flesh faints for you as in a barren and dry land where there is no water.

For you have been my helper, and under the shadow of your wings I will rejoice.

My soul clings to you; your right hand holds me fast.


O God, whose fatherly care reaches to the uttermost parts of the earth: We humbly pray you graciously to behold and bless those whom we love, now absent from us. Defend them from all dangers of soul and body; and grant that both they and we, drawing nearer to you, may be bound together by your love in the communion of your spirit, and in the fellowship of all your children. Hear our prayer, O Lord. Amen.

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