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Century Park Associates

COVID-19 Response Archive

Century Park Strong

February 1, 2021

Dear Century Park Family,

We entered January, 2021 with renewed hope and excitement. Part of that hope stemmed from a deep desire to reengage in all the invigorating connections we have missed throughout the year 2020. Beginning in January, Century Park Associates and residents across the country have prepared and muscled up courageously to get vaccinated through phase 1. Our strong partnership with Walgreens, CVS and Omnicare Pharmacies made it possible for our communities to be among the first to receive this honor. Our company also worked alongside our Chief Medical Advisor to provide education to all associates and residents with several question and answer sessions.

Century Park continues to provide PPE, testing, sanitation protocols, vaccine education and supplies to all our communities. Most of all, we host weekly calls with each community reminding them of their COVID-19 plan, encouraging our teams and reiterating our continued commitment to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Over 70% of our communities have already been offered the first dose of the vaccine. Many of those communities have either completed, or are gearing up for, their second dose in the coming days. Currently, company-wide, 22 residents and 18 associates have active COVID. That is less than 1% of our total associate and resident population.

On a personal note, I want to extend my deep gratitude for the expressions of love and sympathy shown to me during the sudden loss of my parents at the hands of COVID-19. While I had worked diligently to protect and execute strategy preventing the widespread impact of this disease within Century Park, my mom and dad at the early age of 70 were impacted in South Africa. Losing them left me helpless yet understanding to the plight of each family member represented within the Century Park family. I can honestly say, for the first time in my senior living career that I truly understand what it feels like to be a family member. My hope is that you will find refuge in knowing that within a Century Park community, your loved one is never alone, and that our team is committed to doing their very best in honoring those we serve while protecting them during this season. You are not alone!

We anticipate that by the first of March, all communities will be offered their 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Our road to recovery is on the way. Thank you for your relentless support in choosing everyday to be a part of the Century Park family.

With gratitude,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

December 31, 2020

Dear Century Park Family,

As 2020 comes to a close, I want to personally express my gratitude for your support during the most challenging year of our lives.

COVID-19 has touched all of us in a personal way this year. Personally, my immediate family and I were diagnosed with COVID-19 in June, 2020. This Christmas my parents and brother in South Africa were diagnosed and my Dad is currently very ill and in the hospital. My personal experience has given me a deep appreciation for our associates who became family, friend and caregiver to our residents across the company. As a daughter seven thousand miles away, and trying to find a caregiver for my mother who is home alone, made me grateful for our associates that have put their own lives at risk and served willingly with excellence.

Today, I heard my mother's weak voice over the phone and Facetimed with my father's nurse so that I could see his face in his hospital bed. The helpless feeling of not being able to do anything to change his outcome or hold his hand drew my mind to our Century Park families who have felt like me for the past nine months. Our residents have courageously practiced patience and kindness and if anyone has rallied to face change with courage and fearlessness, our residents have. They have faced new protocols, executive orders, and wear masks daily while smiling through it all. Yes, you are the greatest generation!

My heart is filled with pride because throughout 2020, our company continued to serve seniors that needed our services. Our teams learned how to navigate the virtual space for care plan conferences, tours, doctors appointments, staff interviews, and education. WOW! One of the highlights for this year is receiving our Great Place to Work Certification. This anonymous engagement survey engaged our team as they shape the future of Century Park. Their input confirmed why a Century Park community is a great place to work and live.

Whatever your individual belief, I am sure you would agree with me that in 2020, we chose faith over fear. I am reminded of a scripture in James 1:2-8, "Consider it a gift, friends when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith is forced into the open. So, don’t get out of it, let it do the work so you can become mature and well developed, not deficient in any way." (The Message)

Thank you for the gift of serving you. My prayer is that 2021 will be a year of renewed hope as a result of the strong faith we have cultivated in 2020.

With deep gratitude,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

December 14, 2020

Dear Century Park Associate Resident and Family,

Over the next few weeks you will be hearing about the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine in our communities. Century Park has partnered with state governments, the CDC, CVS and Walgreens pharmacies to offer this promising path towards a brighter tomorrow.

This past year has been heart breaking for our associates, residents, and families. In the recent months, we have seen COVID-19 cases grow and develop into a clear third wave. As we entered into the holiday season, we increased our protections with suspending communal dining and offering thoughtful one-on-one engagement. While we understand that this decision is a difficult one for our residents, our associates and residents have chosen to be safe and make our communities "home for the holidays."

Century Park has registered all our communities to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. We are strongly encouraging our residents and associates to take advantage of the FDA authorized vaccines, but we are not requiring it. We understand that there are varying levels of vaccine anxiety, so we will continue to provide resources, education, and understanding as together we demonstrate our commitment to protecting each other and our residents. As a company, we continue to consult with Dr. Jonathan Evans, MD, MPH, CMD, who is board certified in internal, Geriatric Medicine. Dr. Evans has a background in Public Health and Epidemiology and he has been kind enough to offer his sound medical expertise and support in answering questions our residents and associates may have.

As soon as our communities receive a testing date by their State, our pharmacy providers will be offering consent forms that will need to be signed by residents, associates, and powers of attorney (POA) for residents unable to give consent. Once all the consent forms are received, each of our communities will be hosting vaccine clinics operated by our pharmacy provider. COVID-19 protocol will be held at the highest level in coordinating testing times and operating these vaccine clinics.

I have attached a set of frequently asked questions along with links to resources that will enable you and your loved ones to make an informed decision. We are all in this together, and your decision to "show muscle" and be vaccinated shows your love for those we serve and offers a bridge to a better tomorrow. I could not be prouder of our residents, families, and associates. You are Century Park Strong!

Sincerely,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

Resources

Video Q&A

COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ

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CDC Vaccines

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Pfizer Press Release

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Moderna Press Release

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December 2, 2020

Vaccine Communication from Century Park

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COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution (Argentum)

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Reopening Plan

October 16, 2020

Dear Century Park Associate Resident and Family,

One of the most difficult and painful challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the necessary physical separation of our residents from their families and friends. As state governing bodies and local health departments approve indoor visitation for our communities, Century Park Associates will slowly move to comply while still adhering to our strict infection control protocols. That is why we are excited to introduce Century Connection Rooms which will allow safe face to face visits while minimizing the continuing risk of exposure to the virus.

Each of our communities will host a Century Connection Visiting Room equipped with a plexiglass panel to accommodate one on one visits. Prior to approving scheduled indoor visits, a carefully crafted checklist including education of our teams, and communication with our families is imperative. Please be patient with our communities as they prepare to reopen their doors for pre-scheduled indoor visits. While we desire to comply with our local and state governing bodies, it is imperative that families and guests understand that our priority is and always will be the safety of our residents. Any guests failing to comply with our indoor visitation guidelines will be asked to leave our community. Please understand that the COVID-19 situation is extremely fluid, and regulations are constantly changing. At any time, the state could issue an Executive order to temporarily pause or even eliminate indoor visitation.

We are grateful for your continued support and covet your assistance as we slowly move towards reopening our communities for visitors and guests.

Sincerely,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

Indoor Visitation Guide (Century Connection)

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Welcome to Celebrities in Quarantine!

The residents at Garden Plaza of Greenbriar Cove in Ooltewah, Tennessee, recently used their extra time indoors to recreate famous movie scenes, quarantine style!

Words of Encouragement from our COO

Our COO, Esmerelda, has a few encouraging words she would like to share with our associates!

May 18, 2020

My heart goes out to families and friends all around us now whose lives have been impacted in so many ways by the Coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic. According to Johns Hopkins University, the global number of confirmed COVID-19 cases now exceeds 4.5 million. As a nation, the road to full recovery - both from a healthcare and economic perspective, will be a very long one. Currently, two communities within the Century Park family have experienced the impact of the coronavirus. Both communities have resolved their cases and are working closely with the local state health department to ensure continued resolution.

We have successfully delivered more than 40 hours of formal COVID-19 training and re-training sessions to our community associates. These robust protocols and extensive training sessions have served us well and will continue to guide our work as we strive to protect and keep our communities safe. All our associates are required to wear masks, and all our residents are strongly encouraged to wear masks when out of their apartments. We take the responsibility to keep our residents safe with the utmost priority. To that end, we have begun testing our associates through the different states. We also need your help. We understand that as certain states begin to lift their protocols, residents and families are looking to visit each other and visit purveyors outside our community. More than ever, this is not a time for seniors or their families to align with the majority. Our protocols must stay in place until cases have begun to plateau or start a slow decline. My hope is that you will help the leadership in your community by continuing to align with OUR protocol. Should you leave our community for an emergency, please note that you will be requested to self-isolate for 14 days in your apartment. Necessary medical visits are permitted mainly because all medical teams are taking the highest precautions necessary. However, we are requesting that you always wear a mask, and preferably utilize our staff for any errands or supplies you may need.

Century Park Leadership is working day and night in our efforts to provide constant communication. We want to navigate this pandemic by using validated data. I am aware that this is a very difficult time for seniors in the world, however, our responsibility is to you! You are our family, and we are striving to do our best in continuing to earn your trust.

Sincerely,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

May 18, 2020

My heart goes out to families and friends all around us now whose lives have been impacted in so many ways by the Coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic. According to Johns Hopkins University, the global number of confirmed COVID-19 cases now exceeds 4.5 million. As a nation, the road to full recovery - both from a healthcare and economic perspective, will be a very long one. Currently, two communities within the Century Park family have experienced the impact of the coronavirus. Both communities have resolved their cases and are working closely with the local state health department to ensure continued resolution.

We have successfully delivered more than 40 hours of formal COVID-19 training and re-training sessions to our community associates. These robust protocols and extensive training sessions have served us well and will continue to guide our work as we strive to protect and keep our communities safe. All our associates are required to wear masks, and all our residents are strongly encouraged to wear masks when out of their apartments. We take the responsibility to keep our residents safe with the utmost priority. To that end, we have begun testing our associates through the different states. We also need your help. We understand that as certain states begin to lift their protocols, residents and families are looking to visit each other and visit purveyors outside our community. More than ever, this is not a time for seniors or their families to align with the majority. Our protocols must stay in place until cases have begun to plateau or start a slow decline. My hope is that you will help the leadership in your community by continuing to align with OUR protocol. Should you leave our community for an emergency, please note that you will be requested to self-isolate for 14 days in your apartment. Necessary medical visits are permitted mainly because all medical teams are taking the highest precautions necessary. However, we are requesting that you always wear a mask, and preferably utilize our staff for any errands or supplies you may need.

Century Park Leadership is working day and night in our efforts to provide constant communication. We want to navigate this pandemic by using validated data. I am aware that this is a very difficult time for seniors in the world, however, our responsibility is to you! You are our family, and we are striving to do our best in continuing to earn your trust.

Sincerely,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

May 1, 2020

April 24, 2020

As the world continues to experience life-changing events, as a result of COVID-19, Century Park is overwhelmed with gratitude towards our residents and family members for their unwavering support and encouragement. We remain deeply grateful for our associates throughout the country who have stepped up, in so many ways, to care for our residents at one of the most critical times in our history. There are not enough words in the English language to express our admiration and sincere appreciation to each associate that has given their all to caring and loving our residents. If love could heal, each of our residents would be completely healed by their love.

Despite the staggering COVID-19 infection rates that we're observing across the world, I continue to believe that our seniors, the most vulnerable population, are far safer, healthier and happier living with us in one of our Century Park communities. Our close partnerships with local and state regulators along with daily access to nursing personnel, chef-prepared meals, safe socialization, and meaningful activities that adhere to COVID-19 protocols offer unique value with clear benefits that would be very difficult for senior adults, who continue to live alone, to replicate. While you may hear reports in the media of residents in senior living communities contracting the virus, far more seniors continue to be impacted by COVID-19 in their own homes. In addition, seniors across the country continue to be plagued with depression, loneliness and hunger.

As Century Park supporters and local citizens, I am sure you are aware that certain cities and states are eager to get their local economies going again and have already begun to relax their restrictions. I hope you understand that our business is very different from that of retail stores, restaurants or hotels that serve the general public. We serve a population that is far more vulnerable to the coronavirus, and therefore we need extra protection and safeguards to ensure their continued wellbeing. We have developed a phasing out plan, if and when the CDC and local health departments give us a green light to begin relaxing our restrictions. However, please understand that we will not be lifting our safety protocols at this time.

We understand that these are unprecedented times, and we are so proud of the real-life heroes that work to make our residents' safety and wellbeing a priority. It was Martin Luther King Jr. who said, "the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."

Sincerely,
Esmerelda Lee
Chief Operating Officer/EVP

Please click here ( PDF ) for other proactive steps we are taking to manage COVID-19 in all of our communities.

For media inquiries, please contact Danielle Rhodes, 423-473-5033, dcrhodes@centurypa.com

April 6, 2020

During this time, it is critical that we continue to communicate with transparency on what our communities have done so far in preparation for a potential COVID-19 event.

The health, safety, security, and comfort of our residents and teams is our top priority. All of Century Park's communities are carefully following the rapidly changing Coronavirus/COVID-19 situation and have been acting upon recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local Health Departments and Regulatory Agencies. We have taken the following actions over the past few weeks:

  • Conducting additional training with team members following CDC recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19, focusing on proper handwashing, housekeeping, and disinfecting
  • Restricting any employee from working if he or she feels ill or has symptoms of a respiratory illness
  • Conducting retraining on Standard Precautions policies and procedures in the event a resident or employee may show signs of illness
  • Adhering to strict visitor restriction protocols set forth on March 23, 2020
  • Residents are being served all their meals in their apartments
  • Conducting health screenings, including temperature checks, of all staff members at the beginning of their shifts.
  • All staff have begun wearing masks for your protection effective April 2, 2020
  • Establishing protocols for food, supplies, equipment, and prescriptions

We acknowledge that this can be a worrisome situation for our residents and their families. We are continuing to do everything we can, under the recommended protocols, to keep our residents' mental health in a good place. Our residents understand the steps we are having to take and support our efforts to keep them safe.

We are very confident in our food supplies (and food supply chain) across all of our communities. We are working very closely with our national food service provider on a daily basis to ensure no disruption for however long any quarantine may last.

All deliveries are being dropped at a designated place outside of our communities. They are then disinfected before they enter one of our communities.

We are following all recommended protocols and we are refraining from all group events at this time, including outings. We continue to make sure residents are fed healthy, delicious food in the privacy of their apartments.

Currently, only residents with symptoms would be of highest priority for testing and treatment, and all testing needs to be done in the hospital, not in our facilities. Federal healthcare officials have stated we can anticipate tests will become available for everyone who might benefit from a COVID-19 test, in coming weeks.

The Century Park Support Center is meeting every day and communicating daily with each community. For any community that would confirm an actual case, we will have constant communication. Additionally, we have distributed checklists to all communities, and they have to turn in the checklist to the regional director of operations daily and weekly.

We appreciate your patience and continued support during this challenging time. While we are doing everything in our power to prevent and prepare; and following all guidelines by the CDC and local health departments, there is no playbook for this unprecedented crisis.

April 3, 2020

We have added Call Multiplier as another way to communicate COVID-19 updates.

March 28, 2020

All employees are now wearing masks at all times, as well as residents that come out of their apartments.

March 24, 2020

Thank you for the continued faith and trust you place in us and our teams across the country. Nothing is more important to us than our residents. Our associates are working tirelessly to ensure that your loved one is safe, happy and healthy. Our staff is highly trained in infectious disease protocols and those protocols have been put in place. Additionally, we are continuing to do everything we can, under the recommended protocols, to keep our residents' mental health in a good place.

We understand that this is also a challenging time for you as a family member. Your routine of visiting our community has changed, and you are also trying to adjust to your "new normal," while being concerned about your loved one. We want you to know that although there are restrictions on our visiting protocol, your role as a loving child, spouse or family member has not changed. You can and should remain connected to your loved one.

  • If your family member does not have a telephone, our direct number is (423) 495-9405. We will work with you to provide a private space at each of our locations and a scheduled time for you to talk with your loved one.
  • In addition, the Lifestyle Director's at our communities have received an iPad to use for virtual calls. Your loved one should ask to be able to use that iPad for virtual visitation with you and we'll schedule time for that to happen.
  • We also happy to coordinate Window face-time for you and your loved one to see each other. These are "in person" visits where you will be provided seating outside a designated window area to communicate with your family member who is inside the community.

We are also offering you, our beloved family member, opportunities to volunteer your time by running errands on behalf of our residents should they need supplies or toiletries. Our community has also set up collection bins for any additional supplies needed i.e. Hand sanitizer, paper towels, toilet paper, Clorox wipes, gloves, coloring books, puzzles etc. Any help you can offer to residents or our amazing staff would be so appreciated. We are currently working with a call center to coordinate constant communication via text and telephone to keep you updated on changes and updates within our community.

Thank you for adapting to change amidst challenging times. You are and will always be a part of our family, and we appreciate your constant support and encouragement.

March 22, 2020

Essential Employee letter provided to employees due to shelter in place ruling. All our staff are essential to working because we are all caregivers in healthcare.

March 13, 2020

There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our community, and we are taking necessary precautions to protect our residents.

We are utilizing infection control procedures set forth by CMS, CDC and local health departments, and going over our own infection control policies and procedures. In addition, we are complying with the new state mandates, CDC and CMS guidelines to facilitate best practices in each of our communities.

These guidelines do limit visitors significantly to help protect our residents from possible exposure to this virus, and in some instances may restrict visitors almost entirely. Visits will now be restricted to essential visits only. As such, we encourage families to establish alternate ways of communicating with our residents, such as by telephone, texting, video conferencing or other means. We understand family members are an integral part of our residents' lives and encourage any family members with concerns or questions about these limitations to call the community for more information.

Our associates are being diligent on practicing proper hand hygiene, which is a recurring education they normally receive, beginning with their orientation at our community. Every associate is now screened when they arrive for work, including checking temperature, to ensure no additional sickness is brought into our building. If they have a fever over 100.4, we send them home and ask they visit their personal physician. This is in accordance with CMS and CDC guidelines.

Our community is still fully operational, and we will continue to take all appropriate measures to ensure the safety and well-being of our residents, our associates and the community.

March 9, 2020

Century Park is taking proactive steps against COVID-19. There is no higher priority to our entire Century Park Family than the safety of our residents and associates. We are in close communication with medical professionals, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), government agencies, and internal teams, and we are acting upon their recommendations.

We are or have already taken the following actions based on their guidance:

  • Conducting additional training with team members following CDC recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19, focusing on proper handwashing, disinfecting and screening.
  • Restricting and evaluating associates who feel ill and have symptoms of respiratory illness
  • Conducting retraining on Standard Infection Control Precautions in the event a resident or employee may show signs of illness
  • Using signage and communications to limit visitors to our communities, particularly targeting individuals who have shown symptoms of respiratory illness (cough, fever, sore, throat, runny nose and/or shortness of breath)
  • At communities within close proximity of a location where COVID-19 have been confirmed, implementing policies to deny access to individuals known to have traveled to a restricted country within the last 14 days, or who have signs or symptoms of respiratory infection (such as fever, cough, and sore throat), or who have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19
  • Our communities have protocols for food, supplies, equipment and prescriptions as needed

We want you to feel confident in the care your loved ones receive daily. As a result, we have conducted additional training with our teams to prevent the spread of COVID-19, focusing on proper handwashing, cleaning procedures and screening measures for residents, visitors and associates.

We've developed a host of resources to keep you informed and updated along the way. Each community has resources on site for your review, and we are updating our company blog to post updates as this situation evolves.

Thank you for your patience and trust in Century Park Associates. We are prepared to navigate through these challenging circumstances with your loved ones' health and safety at the forefront of everything we do. We are caregivers, and we feel called to serve ALL with compassion and selflessness.

March 4, 2020

With National and International concern rising about the Coronavirus, Century Park is keeping a very close eye on the situation. We have sent several items to educate our families, residents and associates.

Due to all the media coverage, we understand that there may be concern about the health of our residents. We are taking this very seriously as every resident is like family to us. We are confident in the care we provide, the daily operating protocols of each community and our ability to identify and manage symptoms should they develop. We understand the importance of keeping family members informed of the happenings at our communities, and in the spirit of transparency want to proactively communicate with you, rather than waiting for you to reach out to us. Ensuring residents are cared for in a safe and healthy environment is our greatest concern.

Currently, we don't have any cases in our communities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended a variety of steps that we are implementing to help reduce the potential for the virus to enter our building. However, we need your help in battling COVID-19. Below are some examples of how you can help protect the residents, as well as prevent the spread throughout the community.

At this time, we request that you do not visit the center if you have any symptoms of respiratory illness. Those symptoms include cough, fever, sore throat, runny nose, and/or shortness of breath. We understand that connecting with family members is incredibly important, and there are a variety of other ways you might consider connecting with them. These may include telephone, email, text or through Skype or Facebook. Or, you can call often to check-in with us regarding your loved one.

Our communities are following the recommendations of the CDC on prevention steps, including following strict handwashing procedures. We also are staying up-to-date with the CDC recommendations as they are updated. In addition, our communities are in close contact with their local and state health department and are following their guidance. Including, but not limited to:

  • Sick employees should stay home. At this time, we request that you stay home if you have any symptoms of respiratory illness. Those symptoms include cough, fever, sore throat, runny nose and/or shortness of breath.
  • Notify us if you develop respiratory symptoms while at work. These include cough, fever, sore throat, runny nose and/or shortness of breath.
  • Practice proper handwashing hygiene. All associates should clean their hands before and after interaction with residents and their environment with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. Please review the CDC's information on coughing and sneezing etiquette.
  • Perform routine environmental cleaning. Routinely clean all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops and doorknobs. Use the cleaning agents that are usually used in these areas and follow the directions on the label. No special cleaning is necessary for COVID-19.

Thank you for entrusting your loved one to our communities. We remain committed to providing excellent care, and we welcome your questions any time.

Letter to Century Park Family Members

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Letter to the General Public

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Tough Questions Answered

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COVID-19 Advice for the Public (WHO)

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