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COVID-19 Update Jan 5, 2022: Alberta

January 5, 2022

COVID-19-Blog

Hello everyone,

As you know, the rampant spread of Omicron in the general community is having an enormous impact on our healthcare system, businesses and individuals. Our Designated Essential Visitors (DEVs), general visitors, residents and team members are all being impacted, as many have been identified as a close contact of someone infected by COVID-19.

Dr. Hinshaw stated, “Ontario is only a little more than a week ahead of us” and what we are seeing in that province is a decrease in staffing across all sectors due to close contact community spread. While we have contingency plans in place to deal with staffing shortages, we anticipate the coming weeks will be challenging and evolve rapidly.

Currently, two PCR-confirmed positive tests for COVID-19 signal a retirement community outbreak: This is a low threshold given current case counts. We are at a heightened risk for an outbreak every time we have positive rapid test results of team members, residents and visitors or when someone in those groups identifies as a close contact of another confirmed positive case.

We want to be proactive to ensure the health and safety of all who live and work with us. Effective immediately, we are enhancing required testing protocols to rapid test all team members prior to each and every shift rather than the standard two times per week. Visitors will continue to be asked to show proof of testing two times per week until we are able to secure additional rapid tests to expand to this group.

We do not want to get to the point where we must isolate residents to the comfort of their suites or pause general visitors. However, things are changing fast, and these are standard outbreak and infection prevention and control procedures.

Visitors, we continue to ask you to help keep Seasons residents and staff safe and healthy by remembering the following:

  • Please do not visit a Seasons Retirement Community if you suspect or know you have had contact with a positive COVID-19.
  • Please call us right away if you know or suspect you are positive for COVID-19 and have visited a Seasons loved one within 48 hours prior.
  • Please do not visit even if you have a single symptom.
  • Please wear your mask covering your nose and mouth the entire time you are with your loved one, and practice good hand hygiene and physical distancing.

Despite the seriousness of the situation we are in, it isn’t all doom and gloom! The good news is, vaccines are proving effective as many who receive a positive rapid test are asymptomatic and surprised by the result. They diminish the severity of outcomes in vaccinated individuals, which is very important to our vulnerable population. If you have yet to receive your booster and are 5 months past your 2nd dose please don’t delay and register to receive your third dose as soon as possible.

I want to thank our dedicated team members for continuing to do their best to care for and provide excellent customer service to our residents. Thank you, residents and families, for your support, patience and cooperation with changing protocols. We know you have many options for where you work and live; thank you all for choosing Seasons. Please know that we continue to make all decisions with your safety, health and wellbeing in mind.

Sincerely,

LeighAnne Voll
Chief Operating Officer,
Seasons Retirement Communities

For additional online resources for COVID-19 you can visit the following sites:

Canada Health
Alberta Health
Alberta Health Services
Public Health Ontario
Retirement Home Regulatory Authority

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