Pegasus Senior Living's Response to COVID-19

Preventing the Coronavirus:

COVID-19 Update

June 1, 2020

Dear Pegasus Residents, Families, and Associates:

We hope you are well! As the nation moves forward with reopening in phases, we wish to inform you of our current procedures and what our situation will look like for the time being. The senior living industry as a whole will not have lesser restrictions until the final phases are implemented and are in accordance with the CDC. This includes all of our communities.

We understand how this can affect families and friends who wish to visit, however, we must do everything we can to protect our residents and associates. Our teams will continue to make themselves available to our families so they can stay connected with their loved one. In addition, engagement continues to be a top priority for our teams to ensure our residents have enriching experiences daily.

If you are following any of our communities on Facebook, you may have noticed the activities and events we are holding that are still in compliance with current safety restrictions. Technology continues to be used so our residents can interact with their family and friends every day. Our activities and lifestyle directors are also coming up with unique and fun small group activities that our residents love, including scenic bus drives to areas that allow it. Make sure to follow your Pegasus community page to see all of the pictures and videos!

We want to thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate this pandemic. Our mission remains, and continues to be, about putting the safety and well-being of our residents and associates first. We will continue keeping everyone apprised of any new and necessary protocols as they occur. If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

May 7th, 2020

We hope you and yours are well. During National Nurses Week, which began Wednesday, May 6 and ends Tuesday, May 12, we are thinking of our frontline heroes today and every day for their dedicated service to our residents. We recognize and appreciate beyond words the hard work of all our team members and what they are doing to save lives.

Our communication and preparatory efforts have been successful within our communities as we have not experienced uncontrolled outbreaks. We are continuously grateful to our healthcare teams and for Dr. Sandra Petersen leading the charge. We can confidently follow all protocols related to COVID-19 with ample PPE, masks, and onsite testing capabilities.

Since the COVID-19 crisis began, all Pegasus team members have gone above and beyond to ensure our residents’ and fellow associates’ safety. We continue to do so despite several states opening back up in phases. Prevention and safety protocols will remain in effect for the safety of our residents; however, we do appreciate family members’ understanding of this difficult and ever-changing process. We continue to monitor all federal, state, and local safety recommendations daily.

We want to thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate this pandemic. We will continue to keep everyone apprised of any new and necessary protocols as they occur. If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

April 21st, 2020

In previous updates, we have shared information about the extensive infection control protocols we already have in place, which include restricting non-essential visitors, conducting daily screenings, checking all team members’ and residents’ temperatures, and moving from communal dining to in-suite service. To ensure we are following social distancing guidelines, our community teams have also significantly modified programming and activities to ensure that residents continue to have the opportunity to experience meaningful days and connect with the world around them.

We know that there continue to be more and more news stories as it relates to Assisted Living communities and Skilled Nursing facilities having uncontrolled outbreaks, which we know is causing concern. However, we have been extremely fortunate to have access to necessary personal protective supplies. We are also extremely fortunate to have Dr. Sandra Petersen with Pegasus Senior Living, who was critical in ensuring every Pegasus community has access to tests for all associates and residents. Our access to testing has been unrivaled throughout the senior living industry.

We remain extremely grateful for each associate who works for Pegasus Senior Living and their commitment to our residents. They have risen to the occasion by wearing appropriate personal protective equipment, increasing infection control processes, modifying programming, providing in-room dining, and so much more. It is their dedication and commitment that has really allowed for us to have had the results in which we have had.

In the coming weeks we know there are several states that will begin re-opening many businesses. Given the higher risk the virus posed to our residents, we are intentionally planning to continue our aggressive measures to reduce potential exposure to our residents. We will continue to monitor and evaluate how and when to modify these procedures. We are aware of the strain this causes for residents,  families, and associates so we share with you the desire to get back into a normal cadence, but our goal is to always ensure everyone’s safety so we urge you to please continue following our policies and procedures

Again, we genuinely appreciate the support that we have received from our families and residents across the country.

April 8th, 2020

Pegasus Senior Living remains committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of our residents and associates. Our teams and residents are doing well adjusting to the “new normal.” Our teams are also focusing on ways to bring joy to residents each day and we are incredibly proud of the creative ways they are finding to keep residents connected. We have iPads and other mobile devices to help residents virtually connect with their loved ones. We are loving the creative virtual interactions that are occurring throughout our communities.

We continue to focus on our residents having the best possible experience despite all the barriers we are up against. Many of our communities are doing happy hour carts, dessert carts, and other activities to keep our residents engaged.

Of course, in addition to keeping residents engaged, we are still focusing on our teams relating to infection control. We are continuing to train on personal protective equipment usage along with other necessary infection control measures to help reduce potential exposure and/or spread of the virus.

We have also been incredibly gratified by the outpouring of support we have received from family members and the community at large. One of our communities has daily entertainment occurring outside their windows. Children have been sending sweet notes, letters and so many of you have asked us how you can help. We truly appreciate this encouragement and we can tell you that it means a lot to our team members who are working long days to support our communities.

We want to thank you again and encourage you to reach out to your community leadership team if you have specific suggestions or questions. We will also continue to provide updates with any new information via email and our website.

March 30th, 2020

Pegasus Senior Living is continuing to monitor daily new developments as it relates to COVID-19. We know that these times are extremely challenging, but we continue to be in awe of our team’s commitment to the care they provide our residents day in and day out. We remain fully committed to the safety and well-being of our residents and team members. We have all our current protocols in place and are following through on our commitment of executing each protocol every day.

We are pleased to announce that we have test kits available in all our communities in the event a resident and/or associate becomes symptomatic. Having Dr. Sandra Petersen on our team has allowed us to use her expertise to be able to keep all our communities as prepared as possible.

As an organization, we are continuing to place a great deal of attention on infection control. We are rigorous in our approach to help prevent any potential spread. The same rigorous efforts are being made in our dining services program as we continue to serve meals to each resident’s apartment three times daily.

We want to again thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate these uncharted waters. We encourage all our family members and their friends to follow this journey on our community Facebook pages. There are both updates and wonderful images highlighting your loved ones. 

If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

March 19th, 2020

Pegasus Senior Living is continuing to monitor daily new developments as it relates to COVID-19. As difficult as these times are, we find tremendous comfort in knowing that we have incredibly dedicated associates who continue to show up each and every day to ensure that our residents are receiving the care that they deserve. We also have really found great comfort in seeing the wonderful and creative interactions that families are having with their loved ones. We know these times are uncertain in so many ways but there is nothing more special than seeing a smile on our residents’ faces.

We are committed to continuing to put every effort and protocol into ensuring our residents’ and associates’ health and well-being are at the forefront of all we do. Below are some of the protocols that we continue to have in place:

  • Screening every essential visitor and associate when entering the community. We are also screening our residents daily for any symptoms.
  • Personal protective equipment being used by associates and essential visitors when needed.
  • Increased training on hand washing and other sanitation protocols.
  • Increased cleaning of resident and common area spaces.
  • Ceased use of dining room for those who do not require support and/or supervision.
  • Ceased large group activities and began offering small group activities along with in-apartment activity options.

We want to let you know that you might hear or begin seeing our team members using masks for the entirety of their shifts. This is in line with new CDC recommendations. We currently have a supply of both surgical masks and N95 masks. 

As you can imagine with this new recommendation, and the shortage the country is expecting, we are asking that if you have any of these supplies and are willing to donate them, please do so. 

We continue to work with local and national vendors as well in an effort to keep our communities as a high priority.  We will continue to keep everyone apprised of any new and necessary protocols as they occur. Currently, there are still no known cases of COVID-19 in our communities.

We want to again thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate these uncharted waters. We encourage all our family members and their friends to follow this journey on their community’s Facebook page. There are both updates and wonderful images highlighting your loved ones.

If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

March 17th, 2020

An Update on COVID-19 from our Co-Founder and Vice-Chair Chris Hollister:

March 15th, 2020

Pegasus Senior Living continues to make the safety and security of our residents, families, and associates our highest responsibility. On an ongoing basis we as an organization are continuing to evaluate additional practices. Since more and more cases are arising across the country, we have made the decision to cease the use of our dining rooms to reduce larger gatherings.

The kitchen will remain open and we will be preparing three meals a day for our residents. We will be delivering the meals to each resident’s apartment using disposable containers and silverware. Special accommodations will be made for residents who require supervision or additional support.

We have already stopped group activities within the communities. We are providing one-on-one activities and actively working towards incorporating more technology to provide further activities across the board. The community will additionally be reaching out at a local level to offer FaceTime and Skype opportunities in order to be able to speak and see your loved ones.

We want to thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate this virus. We know that this is a very unfortunate and uncertain time that we are all living in. Please know that we are continuing to maintain proper vigilance and attention to our prevention and sanitary protocols. We will continue to apply new protocols as we see fit and will communicate them accordingly.

We will continue to keep everyone apprised of any new and necessary protocols as they occur. Currently, there are still no known cases of COVID-19 in our communities. If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

March 13th, 2020

Pegasus Senior Living continues to make the safety and security of our residents, families, and associates our highest responsibility.

Regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus), Pegasus Senior Living has been extremely diligent in our approach to ensure necessary protocols are in place. We are actively monitoring recommendations from local and state governing bodies along with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to ensure the health and well-being of all who have chosen our communities as their home or place of work. 

We have taken a very proactive stance. Our precautions and actions include, but are not limited to:

  • Sending out communication to our families via email, in-person, social media, and mail.
  • Increasing our training related to best practices with sanitation.
  • Limiting visitors to essential visitors only. Essential visitors will enter only during regular business hours and through the community’s designated entrance.
    • Essential visitors are those who provide direct medical services necessary to the patient’s health and well-being. If there are questions regarding whether the visitor is providing an essential medical service, the HWD or designee will make a determination. All essential visitors must complete and pass the visitor log/questionnaire and have their temperature taken. Essential visitors who do not pass the questionnaire must sanitize hands and don appropriate recommended personal protective equipment and follow all CDC COVID-19 guidance.

As an exception, certain non-essential visitors may be allowed entry in situations involving a resident who is on end-of-life care. Any non—essential visitors, meeting these criteria, must complete and pass the visitor log/questionnaire and have their temperature taken.

  • Evaluating all visitors and associates who enter our communities through pertinent questions and by taking the individual’s temperature. Questions we will ask at this time are:
    • Have you recently traveled out of the country or to areas of known infection?
    • Have you been on a cruise in the past 14 days?
    • Are you experiencing any respiratory symptoms such as fever, coughing, sneezing, etc.?
  • Have you been in another healthcare community or hospital with a confirmed case of COVID-19?
  • Having additional supplies on hand, which include necessary nursing supplies, food, cleaning products, etc.
  • Postponing all outside events along with any large gatherings within the communities.
  • Increasing signage highlighting the above along with other necessary concerns.
  • Offering in-room dining for any residents who prefer to not eat in our community restaurant.

We truly believe that our response to this virus is necessary to protect our residents and team members.

We want to thank you all for your patience, understanding and support as we navigate this pandemic. We will continue to keep everyone apprised of any new and necessary protocols as they occur. At this time, there are still no known cases of COVID-19 in our communities. If there are further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your community Executive Director.

March 4th, 2020

As many know, the recent spread of the coronavirus around the world is justifying significant concern among the public and health professionals. Pegasus Senior Living’s commitment never wavers when it comes to the health and safety of our residents, and we are actively monitoring any developments of the new strain of coronavirus or COVID-19.

We are taking all appropriate steps to minimize the risk of coronavirus at our communities. Note: portions of this post are based on communication from the American Seniors Housing Association and HansonBridgett law firm to senior living operators.

The Steps We Are Taking

At this point, we have no knowledge of any cases of coronavirus at our communities. Although some spread is possible before symptoms manifest, infected individuals are thought to be most contagious when they are symptomatic. Given the highly transmissible nature of the coronavirus, prevention is a senior living community’s first line of defense. Accordingly, we are undertaking a comprehensive effort to educate and train associates, residents, visitors and volunteers and ensuring all adhere to our safety protocol. Among the topics we are covering in our training include:

  • Hand hygiene (frequent washing, use of gloves and hand sanitizer)
  • Respiratory hygiene / cough and sneeze etiquette
  • Environmental cleaning, including diligence on wiping down surfaces with antibacterial / virucide cleansers
  • Observing waste disposal best practices to protect residents and associates
  • Continuous training of associates and volunteers on sources of exposure, prevention and recognition of symptoms
  • Procurement of additional water, food, infection control supplies, and medications

Additionally, hand sanitizers with 60% alcohol content are readily available to residents, associates and visitors. We are also posting signs in our communities notifying residents, associates and visitors to report any experienced or observed respiratory symptoms to management. We are extending vetting protocols as well to all outside health care groups such as home health care agencies who may have employees entering our communities.

Another form of commitment to our residents’ health is in the shape of our Health Directors and robust nursing team at our communities. Our excellent in-house associates, whose entire role is maintaining our residents’ safety and health, is invaluable and provides peace of mind to our families.

We are also complying with the Department of State and CDC travel advisories. These advisories are evolving day by day but as of February 29, 2020, the CDC recommends avoiding nonessential travel to China and South Korea and recommends practicing enhanced precautions for those traveling from Italy, Japan and Iran.

We take the health and security of all residents and employees as our highest priority. Our team will post updates should any occur as we continuously monitor any more developments.

Additional Resources