COVID-19 Updates

Frequently Asked Questions

Community Access & Visitors

Community Life

Family Communication

Resident Tips

Staff

Media

As we all work together to respond to the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, at The Arbor Company we remain especially vigilant in the interest of keeping our residents and staff safe.

We provide regular updates to all residents and families via email and automated phone calls. Our most recent updates are below.

March 31 

Dear Arbor Company residents, family members, and friends,

As a reminder, all Arbor Company communities are operating under quarantine measures, and we ask residents to remain in their apartments as a precaution for COVID-19.

While our team is focused on health and safety, we are also focused on keeping every resident as engaged and fulfilled as possible. This goes for every resident, in every neighborhood. 

An engagement cart will travel through the community to offer beverages, snacks, and individually packaged activities. We are also coordinating opportunities to support connection and moments of fun and positivity. While residents may be in their apartments, we’re trying to keep a sense of community through open doors, music in the hallways, and other hallway-based activities.

We know that physical activity is important too. Therefore we are assisting residents to take individual walks in a safe manner when possible. 

Physical distancing should not mean social isolation, and we want to help make connections between residents and their families. Please contact your community if you want to schedule a Zoom or FaceTime call. These often become very special moments that are the highlights of everyone’s day. 

At Arbor, we recognize that many seniors live with dementia. We have dementia care experts on staff who remain focused on ensuring residents living with dementia are receiving the same amount of care and attention as always. This care and attention may look a little different during this time, but rest assured we are doing our best to keep everyone safe. Our approach to caring for people living with dementia has not changed.

We understand that day-to-day structure with opportunities to engage is critical for optimal well-being and oversight is often needed to support safe movement and engagement in the environment. All of this is still taking place within our communities. 

On the safety front, we are continuing our focus on sanitizing and cleaning throughout the building. We also have supplies of protective equipment in all communities, and there are more on the way this week. Our staff are trained in the proper use of this equipment.

As always, we want to keep you informed of what is happening in your community. If there are concerning conditions or symptoms to share about a resident, our team will contact that resident’s emergency contact directly. If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 in your community, we will notify you.

We ask that you direct any questions or concerns to our hotline to leave a message at 404-777-5785 or by email at wecare@arborcompany.com. One of our team members, Victoria Vetter, monitors this hotline continually, and will ensure you receive a response as soon as possible. This hotline is the fastest way for you to receive a response. 

Thank you for your outpouring of encouragement and patience!

Judd Harper
President, The Arbor Company

March 27

Dear Arbor Company residents, family members, and friends,

Thank you for your continued support as we all work together to keep our communities as safe as possible from COVID-19.

As we have watched the spread of this virus around the country, we continue to be concerned that seniors are among the most vulnerable. As we’ve communicated to you, we have already put many protective measures in place, including increased cleaning and sanitization, daily resident and staff screenings, and changes to dining and activities. We believe these measures have been a good start toward protecting everyone in our communities.

In addition, we are now moving to full apartment quarantine in all Arbor Company senior living communities. Many local departments of health have already requested this of us, and we have decided that it is the best next step toward keeping everyone safe.

Our communities are working today to make this transition, and all communities will be on full quarantine by Saturday morning. We ask that all residents remain in their apartments, and we are cancelling group activities. Meals will be delivered to each resident’s apartment.

We have information sheets with frequently asked questions that we are giving to all residents. You can access these questions and more on our website at www.ArborCompany.com/coronavirus

We believe our staff are the best people in the world, and we want to take care of them during this crisis. We have programs in place to pay for their child care due to school closures, add paid time off if they are sick, provide access to mental health professionals, and provide groceries at reduced costs. And today, we announced monetary bonuses for all staff, including added per-hour monetary bonuses for hourly staff and one-time bonuses for salaried department leaders.

Our community staff and leaders are focused on taking care of residents and helping them adjust to this change. We ask that you direct any questions or concerns to our hotline to leave a message for our team at 404-777-5785 or by email at wecare@arborcompany.com. Victoria Vetter, one of our team members, monitors this hotline continually, and will ensure someone responds to you as soon as possible. This hotline is the fastest way for you to receive a response. 

Thank you for your support as we work through this together.

Judd Harper
President, The Arbor Company

March 25

Thank you for your continued support and encouragement throughout this coronavirus pandemic. At Arbor, our focus is, and always will be, keeping our residents and staff safe, especially during this worldwide crisis. And, while things may look different in our communities due to COVID-19, the feeling of a warm and vibrant environment lives on.

We have shifted operations in the communities to promote social distancing. But we also know that socialization and keeping an active body and mind are vital for seniors. So, while our dining and engagement programming look different than they did a few weeks ago, our teams are actively working to maintain positive and productive environments that keep residents at a safe distance from one another.

In addition to these changes in the community, we are continuing our limits on residents leaving the community, except for essential medical appointments. Any residents who do need to leave for essential medical appointments will be asked to remain in their apartments for 48 hours upon returning to the community in an effort to limit everyone’s exposure.

We want you to know that we are here for you. You can reach out to us directly by calling our hotline at 404-777-5785 or by email at WeCare@arborcompany.com. One of our team members monitors this hotline continually, and will respond to you as soon as possible.

Thank you again for your support. It is an honor to serve you.

Judd Harper
President, The Arbor Company

March 18

As the world watches the coronavirus pandemic, I wanted to take a moment to update you on what is happening in Arbor Company communities. First, thank you for your continued support and encouragement as we work 24/7 to keep our residents and staff safe. Your encouraging words and thoughts mean a lot to our residents and teams; they motivate us! Secondly, we continue to be thankful to report that we do not have any currently known cases of COVID-19 in any of our communities. And as I’ve said before, we want to keep it that way.

As you’ve likely seen in the news, restaurants across the nation are closing their dining rooms. At Arbor we consider residents a part of our family, and we want to continue that. But we’re also putting some steps in place to make sure that we are aligned with recommendations from the CDC, CMS, and other governmental bodies to reduce the size of gatherings in the communities, especially at mealtime. Our teams are working to balance residents’ physical health and well-being along with their emotional and psychological health and well-being.

To do this, in assisted living, bridges, and memory care neighborhoods, we are working to expand to all-day dining in shifts, with fewer people in the dining rooms, and expanding dining locations to more places in the community. This is all in the name of accommodating smaller groups of people gathering together. 

In independent living, we’re making a shift to a takeout-style dining model, where residents can pick up their meals in disposable containers and enjoy them in their apartments or even in common areas if they wish. But again, we’ll limit gathering opportunities to smaller groups of people. 

And in all cases, we will continue to maintain strict hand hygiene going in and out of the dining rooms, as well as a huge attention to detail in sanitizing surfaces, glasses, china, and flatware.  

Additionally, we have also made the difficult decision to close our salon operations. Our care staff and engagement teams will work hard to ensure our ladies continue to look beautiful and our gentlemen look handsome!

I also want to take a moment to talk about our staff. We are so grateful for them, as they continue to come to work to serve and take care of all residents. We are doing many things to care for them and their families, including providing money for childcare in light of school systems closing around the country. As many local governments are shifting to curfews and citywide quarantines, our staff are still able to come to work, because they work in a senior care setting. And we have equipped them with authorization letters should they need them. 

We know that change to the normal routines and rhythms in our communities is hard. But we also know that the steps we’re taking help to prevent the global spread of this pandemic. And together, we can get through all of this.

If you have any questions, please reach out to your Arbor Company community. Or, you can call our hotline at 404-777-5785 or email WeCare@ArborCompany.com. Thank you, and we hope you stay well. 

Judd Harper
President, The Arbor Company

What are you doing right now to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

All Arbor Company communities are on apartment quarantine. Residents are asked to remain in their apartments, and we are bringing meals and engagement activities to them. We’re also assisting with laundry, package delivery, and other services to help all residents, and we’re taking them, one by one, on walks for exercise.

What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in our community?

If there is a suspected or confirmed case, we will follow all CDC guidelines and work closely with the state and local departments of health. We continue to monitor all residents and staff members for illness and symptoms. If there are concerning conditions or symptoms to share about your loved one, rest assured that someone on the Arbor Terrace team will contact you directly.

Will you tell me if there is a case of COVID-19 in our community?

Yes. If we are made aware of a positive COVID-19 case by someone in your community, we will notify residents and their families.

Are you testing residents and staff for COVID-19?

We know many of you are interested in making more COVID-19 tests available to members of our community. Local health officials are responsible for determining all COVID-19 testing protocols. We will continue to work with our county and state health departments. If they decide that broad testing is necessary and appropriate in an Arbor Company community, we will fully support this effort and notify you that this is taking place.

Resident Illness

How are you checking residents?

In assisted living and memory care, we are proactively monitoring the temperatures and symptoms of all residents. Residents in independent living are encouraged to participate in this service. 

What happens if a resident has symptoms?

We will assist residents with cold-like or flu-like symptoms, including fever of more than 100°, coughing, or shortness of breath with contacting their physician for medical care.

What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in our community?

While we hope that no confirmed cases of COVID-19 appear in any of our communities, if there is a suspected or confirmed case, we will follow all CDC guidelines and work closely with the state and local departments of health.

Comments & Concerns

Who do I call if I have a comment, concern, or complaint?

The first person you should call is your community’s executive director. We have a phone number and email address set up if you need to get in touch with someone at The Arbor Company: 404-777-5785 or WeCare@ArborCompany.com. We will respond to you as quickly as possible, but usually within 24 hours.

Community Entry

Who is allowed in the community?

No visitors are permitted in any Arbor community until further notice.

What are your screening procedures for people entering the community?

There are no visitors allowed at this time. Our staff and Health care providers entering the community will be asked questions about possible cold-like symptoms, recent travel, and if they have been exposed to a known or suspected case of COVID-19 or work in another health care facility with a positive COVID-19 case. We also take everyone’s temperature to ensure they do not have a fever.

Why are you closed to visitors?

As we monitor the spread of COVID-19 around the country, and understanding that this virus is most dangerous for seniors, we feel that an apartment quarantine is a necessary step toward keeping everyone safe. 

How long will this last?

The COVID-19 pandemic is an ever-evolving situation. We will lift the quarantine and restrictions when we feel it is safe to do so, and based on recommendations from agencies such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state departments of health.

What are the exceptions to this policy?

We will make limited exceptions in extreme or emergency cases. These must be expressly approved by the community’s executive director. Anyone entering the community under these circumstances will be screened upon arrival.

Will my private duty caregiver be allowed to enter the community?

Yes. Health care providers, including home health, private duty, nursing services, physicians, physical therapy, and hospice staff will be granted access to the community once they have completed our entry screening procedures.

What if there is an emergency?

Emergency medical/fire services personnel are able to enter the community if needed. We will make limited exceptions in extreme or emergency cases for family members. These cases must be expressly approved by the community’s executive director. Anyone entering the community under these circumstances will be screened upon arrival.

Can I visit with my loved ones outdoors but on the community grounds?

Because our communities are under quarantine and outside guests pose a risk of exposure to residents, we ask that you do not have in-person visits.

Are there other ways that I can get to see my loved ones?

The dedicated teams at every community are equipped and ready to help facilitate phone call or even a virtual visit using services such as Apple FaceTime, Skype, or Zoom. We’d also love for you to send videos or other messages through community staff. Call and we will tell you how.

Can I volunteer to help residents and the community?

Thank you for interest in sharing your time and talent with our residents. Because the safety of our residents and staff is our priority, we have placed all communities under quarantine and no visitors are allowed at this time. Please contact us via email our team will coordinate a way for you or your organization to help remotely.

Resident Exit & Reentry

Are residents allowed to leave?

We ask that you remain in your apartment in the interest of everyone’s safety. If you have an essential medical appointment, please let us know.

Why are residents not allowed to leave their apartments?

As an added precaution to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our community, we have moved to apartment quarantine. All residents should remain in their apartments until further notice in the interest of everyone’s safety. 

Why are residents who live in cottages or freestanding homes not allowed into the building?

We are not monitoring the comings and goings of residents who live in cottages or freestanding homes. Therefore, we cannot allow them to enter the main community building.

Am I allowed to temporarily move out of the community?

Yes. If you desire, you can temporarily move out of the community to stay with family members. You cannot return until we are able to lift the quarantine. Rent for your apartment will still be due. If you pay for a supplementary level of care, that fee will be waived after seven days, per the community’s residency agreement.

What happens if someone goes to the hospital and is ready to return to the community?

Residents who are returning from the hospital will be screened just like others who enter the community. 

Deliveries

How do deliveries work?

Deliveries will be made outside the building and a staff member will accept them and take them to residents.

Can I bring something to a resident?

Yes. We will follow our delivery procedure to have a staff member meet you at the entrance to accept your items and take them to the resident.

Personal Needs

What if I need personal supplies? (Over-the-counter medications, soap, shampoo, etc.)

We recommend that a family member bring your items to the front of the community, where a staff member will accept them. We can help you set up an account with online grocery and pharmacy delivery services, such as Instacart, to order essentials.

Will the salon remain open?

No. The salons inside communities are temporarily closed. 

What if I use the services of a dog walker?

You can continue to do so but will need to meet the dog walker at the community’s main entrance.  The dog walker is not allowed in the community.

Medical Needs

How will I get to my doctors’ appointments?

We ask that you remain in your apartment in the interest of everyone’s safety. If you have an essential medical appointment, please let us know. We encourage you to use telemedicine if your physician offers that service. 

Can a family member pick me up for my doctors’ appointments?

We ask that you remain in your apartment in the interest of everyone’s safety. If you have an essential medical appointment, please let us know. 

If I live in an independent living apartment, how do I pick up my prescriptions and over the counter medicines from the pharmacy?

We can help you set up an account with online grocery and pharmacy delivery services, such as Instacart, to order essentials

What if I need hospice care?

Health care providers, including home health, private duty, nursing services, physicians, physical therapy, and hospice staff will be granted access to the community once they have completed our entry screening procedures.

Dining

How do meals work?

We will deliver all meals, snacks, and beverages to your apartment.

Staff

How are staff screened?

We take all staff members’ temperatures every day. If anyone has a fever or has cold-like symptoms, we do not allow them to work until they are symptom-free.

Do staff get paid when they miss work?

Full time and part time staff have a paid time off (PTO) bank that allows them to be paid when missing work due to illness.Temporarily, we have offered to extend paid time off balances for any staff members who need it and do not have time remaining in their PTO banks.

What are you doing to help staff?

Beginning March 29 through April 25 we are giving hourly staff a $2 per hour bonus for every hour worked. We have temporarily offered to extend paid time off balances for any staff members who need it and do not have time remaining in their PTO banks. And if any staff members do not have health insurance, we will pay for their visit to a physician or urgent care if they have symptoms of an infectious illness. We will pay for child care for any staff member who is impacted by school closings that would otherwise prevent them from coming to work. We are also working with staff to provide them with low-cost grocery items through our commercial food service vendors.

How are you handling job applications?

We accept online job applications at www.ArborCareers.com. We will hold interviews over the phone or at an offsite location. 

At The Arbor Company, our priority is the health and safety of our residents and staff. Therefore, we take matters like the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic very seriously. As a result, we have put the following in place in all Arbor Company communities:

Modified Visitor & Access Policy

  • No visitors are permitted in any community until further notice.
  • We will make limited exceptions in extreme or emergency cases. These must be expressly approved by the community’s executive director. Anyone entering the community under these circumstances will be screened upon arrival, and will be denied access if they do not pass the screening.
  • Health care providers, including home health, private duty, nursing services, physicians, physical therapy, and hospice staff will be granted access to the community once they have completed our entry screening procedures. 
  • Residents are required to remain on community grounds, except for medical care. Upon returning and as a precaution, residents will be screened, asked to wash their hands, and we will sanitize their walkers and wheelchairs.
  • For communities that have them, residents who live in cottages or freestanding homes are not permitted into the other main community buildings.
  • Deliveries of packages will be made outside the building and a staff member will accept them. 
  • Any ongoing or planned remodeling or construction work is cancelled until further notice, unless contractors are able to access their work areas without entering the community. Exceptions will be made for emergency situations, such as to allow entry for a plumber in the event we have a broken pipe. These vendors will be required to complete the same screening required for others entering the community.

Our engagement team is working hard to keep every resident as engaged and fulfilled as possible. We want to continue to provide meaningful connections throughout the day for each resident and in every neighborhood, despite the current circumstances with COVID-19.

Engagement Highlights in all Communities 

  • An engagement cart service will travel through the community several times through the day to offer beverages, snacks, and individually packaged activity opportunities.  One of our engagement team members will manage this option.
  • We will plan other delightful surprises to sprinkle residents with fun throughout the day.
  • There are opportunities for residents to be escorted for walks to maintain exercise as well as enjoy the outdoors.
  • We offer scheduled times to connect with families via FaceTime or Zoom.

Engagement in Memory Care Neighborhoods

Our approach to caring for people living with dementia has not changed in light of COVID-19. We have dementia experts on staff who remain focused on ensuring residents living with dementia are receiving quality care and attention. While this care and attention may look a little different during this time, we are doing our best to keep everyone safe.

Rest assured we will do our best to keep creativity and meaningful moments up and loneliness down!

Are you connected to Sagely?  We will continue to note resident engagement through Sagely and encourage you to keep updated through our weekly e-mails or the Sagely family app.

At The Arbor Company, we focus on giving you proactive and thorough communication. As always, we will update you with any changes to life in the community. If you have any questions, please reach out to your community’s executive director by calling the community directly. Additionally:

  • We will update this page as new information is available to share.
  • We use email, as well as our automated telephone call system and/or text messages to share important updates. If you are a resident or primary family contact for a resident, and do not receive these emails or phone calls, please call your community and ask to be added to the contact list.

The audio of our latest message is available below. You can subscribe to these messages in any podcast app by searching for Arbor Company Coronavirus Updates for Families.

Other Information

We have posted to The Arbor Company blog additional information about COVID-19:

Keeping Our Residents Safe Through New Visitor Guidelines

The Coronavirus and Senior Living: How We Prepare

What is coronavirus and COVID-19?
A coronavirus is a type of virus that causes respiratory illness — an infection of the airways and lungs. COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus. It’s part of the same family of coronaviruses that includes the common cold.

What are the symptoms? 
The most common early symptoms appear between 2 and 14 days after being infected. Symptoms can be mild to severe. They include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

How does the virus spread?
Right now, medical experts think that COVID-19 spreads from person-to-person through a cough, sneeze or kiss. However, since COVID-19 is a new disease, scientists around the globe are racing to learn more about it.

Do I need to wear a face mask?
It’s best to follow the CDC’s recommendations for using a face mask.

  • If you’re not sick, the CDC does not recommend wearing a face mask to protect yourself from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
  • If you’re sick with COVID-19, or being evaluated for COVID-19, you should wear a face mask when you are around other people to help prevent spreading the disease to others.
  • If you’re taking care of someone who has COVID-19, you should wear a face mask to protect yourself when you are in close contact with a person who is sick with COVID-19, or being evaluated for COVID-19. 

What if I have symptoms?
In assisted living and memory care, let the resident care staff know if you develop a fever, have a cough, or have difficulty breathing. We will assess you and help you decide if you need further medical care.

If you live in independent living, call your doctor if you develop a fever, have a cough, or have difficulty breathing. Remain in your apartment and let the community executive director know.

How can I help protect myself?
Good health habits can help prevent and fight COVID-19. You should:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water aren’t available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when sick and for at least 24 hours after a fever is gone.
  • Cover a cough or sneeze with a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces like phones, keyboards, and doorknobs.
  • Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, drink lots of fluids, and eat nutritious food.

We are proud to have some of the best staff members in the senior living industry who treat our residents as part of their own families.

Video Messages to Staff

 

 

Staff Precautions

  • Our staff are trained in proper infectious disease precautions and procedures, including the proper use of protective equipment, cleaning, and hand washing. We also provide ongoing training in these areas to keep everyone up-to-date.
  • We take all staff members’ temperature every day. If anyone has a fever or has cold-like symptoms, we do not allow them to work until they are symptom-free.
  • We ask all staff members who are sick to stay home until they are well.

Support for Staff

We are taking steps to support our staff during this time so that they can focus on their health and on taking care of residents.

  • In the event of school closures, we will pay for staff members' child care expenses if needed.
  • If a staff member does not have health insurance, we will pay for their costs of visiting a physician or urgent care to be tested and rule out any contagious illness.
  • We don't want an empty paid time off (PTO) balance to stand in the way of staff members taking the necessary time off to get well at home if they are sick. If a staff member's PTO balance is empty, we will continue to pay them while sick with a contagious illness.

Media Statement

March 20, 2020

At The Arbor Company, our priority is the health and safety of our residents and staff. Therefore, we take matters like the worldwide COVID-19 situation very seriously. We have an internal task force in place and are making decisions to change the operations of our communities as needed, following guidance from the CDC, state health departments, industry associations, and also drawing upon our own 30 years of experience in caring for seniors. 

As our focus is on prevention, we have placed limits on who can visit our communities such as not allowing anyone who has recently traveled on a cruise or to a CDC level two or three country. We are screening all guests, vendors, and staff by asking questions and taking their temperatures. Inside the communities, we have increased the frequency and thoroughness of our cleaning and sanitization processes.

For our residents, we have eliminated group outings and visiting groups and organizations. However, engagement and activities teams are focused on keeping life within the communities as normal and fulfilled as possible. We are helping residents and families connect via virtual video call visits if they wish. As always, if residents show any sign of being sick, we ask that they stay in their apartments while we assist them with getting the proper medical attention they need. 

The Arbor Company is proud to have some of the best staff members in the senior living industry who treat our residents as part of their own families. As our policy has always been, staff should not come to work if they have symptoms of an infectious illness. We want to do everything we can to take care of our staff. Temporarily, we have offered to extend paid time off balances for any staff members who need it. And if any staff members do not have health insurance, we will pay for their visit to a physician or urgent care if they have symptoms of an infectious illness.

If there is a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 in any Arbor community, we will follow all CDC guidelines and work closely with the local and state departments of health.

Please direct media inquiries to Kelli Luneborg-Stern at Kelli@trifectapublicstrategies.com or 214-616-1703.

We ask that media avoid visiting communities because we recognize that members of the media have higher levels of exposure to COVID-19 and we do not want to put our residents and staff at increased risk.