Memo-COVID-19 Update-October 30, 2020

FROM: John Burns, President and CEO; Will Blackwell, Vice President Health Services; and Sloan Verlander, Administrator Assisted Living


DATE: October 30, 2020

Westminster Canterbury Richmond is committed to regular, transparent communication about our response to the coronavirus pandemic. Beginning next week, our Live Updates that appear on TV970, our blog at and Facebook will move to a weekly schedule on Thursdays at 3 p.m.

Westminster Canterbury follows the latest guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Virginia Department of Health (VDH).

Assisted Living

On Monday, October 26, a nurse who works the night shift in Assisted Living tested positive for COVID-19. She last worked on Thursday, October 22. This employee does not have a high level of interaction with residents. After completing contact tracing, it was not necessary for any residents to quarantine. We tested a small number of employees who may have had contact with this employee. All test results have been negative so far. We anticipate that the risk of exposure is minimal and continue to monitor the situation.

Mary Morton Parsons Health Center

On Tuesday, October 27, Mary Morton Parsons Health Center had a fifth Infection Control Survey from the Virginia Department of Health. One surveyor was on campus dressed in full personal protective equipment (PPE) and made rounds, finding no issues. The surveyor was very complimentary of our staff and infection control practices and procedures.

One surveyor virtually reviewed resident records and employee records for testing. There were no issues with employee testing. They shared a concern related to the timing of resident testing after a known exposure to a staff member. Testing may not have occurred on the correct date based on their recommendations. We are awaiting the results of the survey. It is important to note that at the time of the testing in question, no residents were infected with COVID-19 nor did any residents subsequently tested positive.

Testing is an important part of infection control. Since June 1, Westminster Canterbury has conducted 3,445 staff tests and 1,831 resident tests for COVID-19 in Parsons Health Center. The frequency of future testing is based on positivity rates in our region. Beginning next week, due to rising positivity rates in Henrico, we will continue testing employees weekly.

Westminster Canterbury Richmond COVID-19 Case Summary

We are committed to continued transparency about our COVID-19 response and cases in our residents and staff. Since March, Westminster Canterbury has had confirmed cases of COVID-19 in a total of 15 residents and 35 employees. All residents have recovered. So far, 34 of the 35 employees have recovered, tested negative twice and returned to work.

At any given time, a number of staff present with symptoms related to COVID-19 and need to be tested. More recently, employees are being exposed to others who test positive for COVID-19, and they must also quarantine while awaiting test results.

Follow the Core Principles of COVID-19 Infection Prevention

These principles are key to keeping us safe and healthy. We must remain vigilant in following these guidelines.

• Wear a mask at all times when around others.

• Wash your hands frequently and use hand sanitizer.

• Always maintain social distancing of at least six feet.

• Everyone must be screened before entering our community.

• Follow enhanced safety and disinfection recommendations from the CDC, CMS and VDH.

• Stay home if you do not feel well and contact your physician. Visitors will not be permitted to enter if they have any signs or symptoms of COVID-19.

Ongoing Updates

• We encourage you to stay up-to-date with us online. Check the COVID-19 Update page at for what to expect when visiting our community and more.

• Live Update videos air on our in-house TV970 station on Thursdays at 3 p.m. and other times as needed. Recordings are available later on, or on TV971 daily at 10 a.m., 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Return to the blog.