Ahead of the curve and protecting our residents
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a tough time for seniors and their loved ones across Canada. But through it all, PARC residents have stayed safe and healthy.
Thanks to our caring, well-trained team closely following provincial health-and-safety protocols, PARC communities have remained COVID-19-free. We’ve been able to balance our residents’ independence with keeping them safe and healthy – and that’s a huge achievement in our book!
COVID-19 is likely to be an issue for the foreseeable future, until a vaccine is available. We plan to remain vigilant even as government restrictions start to ease. And we’re as committed as ever to creating safe, independent, respectful and healthy communities for our residents.
I consider myself lucky to be living here at Oceana PARC during this difficult time. If I was living in my own home I would not have the social contact that we have here by being able to go to the dining room for our 3 meals a day. I hear that at most retirement residences all meals are delivered to your suite. We are lucky. Your staff are amazing. Always so pleasant and helpful.
PATRICIA , OCEANA PARC RESIDENT
Health and safety protocols that work
As a privately owned company, PARC had the flexibility to quickly respond and adapt early to COVID-19. So when national and provincial pandemic measures launched in March, it was a seamless process to step up safety protocols and implement new ones.
Here are some of the measures we implemented swiftly in our communities to protect our residents and get ahead of the curve:
Extra sanitization. We added extra cleaning procedures and staff in all of our residences, flagging common areas and high-frequency touch points – such as reception desks (where we have also added plexiglass barriers) – for special attention.
Bans on non-essential visitors. Anyone who enters PARC premises must sign a risk declaration. We have also implemented a “single entry” system, so that reception can closely monitor traffic.
Physical distancing. We’ve added distancing markers and signs in common areas, and redesigned our dining service model to allow spacing of two metres between residents.
Mandatory face masks for employees. We rolled out masks for all employees, in an order prioritizing those who have the most contact with residents.
Limited employee points of contact. We stopped sharing employees between residences, and asked our regular, part-time, and casual employees to increase their hours at PARC and stop working elsewhere.
Resources for residents to shop and socialize online. We purchased extra iPads for our communities that residents can sign out, library-style, to shop online and socialize remotely with friends and loved ones.
We also implemented regular in-house marketplaces in several communities, where residents can safely shop for essentials without needing to leave the premises.
Family Meetup Centres. We’ve added these pod-like portables at all of our communities to accommodate safe visits between families and residents. Each one has a clear plastic divider inside, and separate entrances, to keep everybody safe while sitting face-to-face.
Safe dining options for residents and families. To give residents a safe way of enjoying meals with their families during the pandemic, we introduced al fresco dining areas, with plenty of physical distance, and heaters for cold weather. On the North Shore, PARC even got into the restaurant business, launching the PARC Family Eatery, a warm and inviting space in the Westerleigh PARC building, where residents of the local communities can sit down, have a laugh and dine with their families safely, thanks to strict COVID-19 safety protocols.
Independent living for the win
There is no “perfect” place to be during a pandemic. But for seniors, living at home, alone, during such a crisis is far from ideal. At the best of times, they might worry about contracting an illness like the flu or suffering a fall. But when something like COVID-19 comes along, with the potential to hit older adults particularly hard, that worry goes into overdrive.
Seniors who live in an independent retirement community like PARC, on the other hand, can rest assured that they’re protected by multiple layers of defence at all times. PARC Retirement Living provides an onsite wellness nurse, 24-hour staff support, high safety and sanitization protocols, and adaptable social, fitness and dining programs at each of its five residences – along with an emergency preparedness plan in place designed to handle potential flu and other outbreaks.
Assistance with shopping, cooking, cleaning and transportation are lifelines when busy grocery stores and public spaces pose risks to seniors. Healthy meal programs and scheduled social activities round out the offering, allowing seniors to maintain their physical and mental well-being during a challenging time.
To learn more about the COVID-19 measures in place at PARC Retirement Living communities, visit: parcliving.ca/covid19
I am so glad to be living here now. I know if I were in my home I would have different lifestyle. I did love my old life style but this is new and different, new friends and new ideas. Also I know that my children are so glad that I am living here. It is so much safer. The staff are wonderful and happy! And there is good food and no dishes – if you want! And I want! There is a good library downstairs and exercise groups – movies etc. So all is well – and the garden is beautiful.
NELL, WESTERLEIGH PARC RESIDENT