Posted: March 6, 2020
This article was consolidated from four previous articles on May 18, 2023
The COVID-19 Pandemic challenged and changed all of us, especially our senior assisted living communities like Dayspring Villa. The health and safety of our residents and team members has always been our highest priority and despite many negative effects of the pandemic, this caused us to strengthen and test our own virus reduction policies and procedures and create a new playbook for any health emergency in the future. You can read more about our Coronavirus preparedness on the Christian Living Communities website. If you have questions, please contact us.
Gratefully, today we are living without the restrictions that were part of our everyday lives for over three years when we followed the guidance and direction of the Colorado Department of Health and Environment, the Centers for Disease Control and local health departments to ensure the safety of our residents.
At Dayspring Villa, residents are able to share meals with other vaccinated residents and take part in community-life programs, and outings, all without a mask! Individuals who wish to wear a mask may, of course, continue to do so due to the proven health benefits. While we continue our vigilance around sanitation and keeping our community disinfected and well ventilated, our community now looks and feels back to normal. Our new normal includes frequent handwashing, proper cough etiquette and requiring team members who are ill to stay home.
This is a welcome change from a time when we had to maintain social distance, limit visitors and wear masks. Even during this period, we were adamant that our residents were able to continue their everyday activities with joy and happiness as much as possible. In order to find this important balance, we followed the state health guidelines when any county positivity rate rose above 10%, and our community vaccination rate was below 70%, we were forced to exclude unvaccinated residents from group programs and outings. During this time when the virus was still considered a serious threat to our residents, we conducted routine testing of team members and residents who left and returned to the community and all visitors were screened, asked for a vaccination card and asked to wear a mask. One of the things our residents missed most were the activity facilitators and entertainers who provide programs in the community. As soon as we could safely do so, we welcomed those who were vaccinated back as well as family pet visitations – all much to the residents’ delight!
One of our most important developments to get our community back to normal was our vaccination efforts.
In a community living environment, each time a positive COVID case is identified, the community goes into “outbreak” status, which then significantly impacts the quality of life of residents, families, and other team members. Numerous senior living companies, health care entities, and government agencies now require all team members to be vaccinated. Additionally, 56 healthcare associations, including the American Medical Association and LeadingAge, have called for “all healthcare and long-term care employers to require their employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.”
Our parent company, Christian Living Communities, required our team members to become fully vaccinated a full 30 days ahead of the state mandate that went into effect and we are proud to say that 100% of team members at Dayspring Villa became fully vaccinated and will continue to take all safety precautions as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control. Our team also ramped up vaccine events for our residents as soon as the vaccine became available.
At the beginning of the COVID-19 global pandemic (March 2020), we reacted quickly by asking our leaders and team members to follow already in place protocols and procedures to ensure the prevention and possible spread of this virus. With the health and safety of our residents and team members as the highest priority, we made every effort to prepare but not panic. We are thankful to our team and residents for making the needed adjustments during a challenging time.