The Health and Safety of our Residents and Staff remains top of mind for Westwinds Communities.
We understand that family and friends are concerned with the well being of their family members residing in our Lodges and Seniors Apartments. We share those concerns and are working hard to ensure that everyone is safe.
July 7, 2021
Notice to Supportive Living Lodge Residents
Further Relaxations at Lodge Sites
Alberta entered Stage 3 on July 1, 2021. All public health measures have now been lifted except for isolation/quarantine requirements and masking requirements in congregate care, including Lodges, health care settings, public transit and where municipal bylaws have been established regarding public masking.
June 23, 2021
Invitation to Telephone Town Hall
You are invited to a Telephone Town Hall with Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health and Dr. James Silvius, Alberta Health Services’ Provincial Medical Director, Seniors Health, Community Seniors, Addiction and Mental Health to discuss the planned approach and proposed timing of lifting public health requirements.
For 15 months now, residents, staff, families and operators have adapted to public health requirements to protect against the severe impacts of COVID-19. We have made great strides in our fight against COVID-19 and now need your feedback on the planned approach to lifting the public health restrictions in continuing care.
June 1, 2021
Westiwnds Communities continues to review and evaluate our progress with respect to the COVID-19 protocols for supportive living. Residents will be pleased to experience a relaxation in quarantine restrictions and resumption of day outings and overnight trips with reduced precautionary measures effective May 31st, 2021.
May 5, 2021
Effective May 10th Westwinds has new indoor and outdoor visitor guidelines, which includes expanded outdoor visits for seniors and up to 4 designated essential visitors indoors. Residents are currently completing a survey on the new guideline to determine if social visiting will occur in the lodge.
April 1st, 2021
Residents and Family are invited to attend a Telephone Town Hall meeting with Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health and Dr. James Silvius from Alberta Health Services (ASH), to discuss the next steps towards easing restrictions in Supportive Living Lodges.
As vaccinations continue to be offered to residents and staff in these settings, AHS would like to understand what changes to restrictions would make the most impact to residents. Although COVID-19 will continue to remain a risk, and there are many unknowns about the protection the vaccine affords, there is a commitment by AHS to timely and informed updates to the public health orders that impact the lodge.
Residents and Families provided critical input into the Safe Visiting Policy (CMOH Order 2-2020) last June / July and are now welcome to provide thoughts on the path forward.
March 22, 2021
All Albertans are encouraged to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Please refer to the attached list for pharmacies that are participating in the vaccination program:
February 4, 2021
COVID Post-Vaccination Survey
Westwinds Communities is currently reviewing our COVID-19 protocols and seeking feedback from our residents, following the vaccination of 90% of them. We are concerned that the province has not yet communicated a process for vaccinating new supportive living residents or employees.
We recognize that many of our residents and employees are dealing with fatigue around the ongoing COVID-19 response, while our lodges remain at risk due to the COVID variant’s emergence into Alberta.
The survey will help us develop and implement continued safe guidance for COVID measures. We will share updates regarding our ongoing and next steps.
January 18, 2021
Westwinds Communities is pleased to share continuing good news. Effective January 18th, 2021, full hair salon services and outdoor visitation on lodge sites will resume. Appropriate PPE protocols, social distancing and sanitation remain in effect.
January 6, 2021
We are pleased to share with you that we have received confirmation from Alberta Health Services that Residents at all three seniors lodges are eligible to receive the vaccination for the COVID-19 virus.
Westwinds Communities highly encourages both residents and staff to participate in the vaccination process. The Moderna vaccine is 94.1% effective after the second dose and is known to be better for those persons who suffer form allergies.
December 15, 2020
Sandstone Lodge COVID-19 Outbreak Restrictions Lifted
Westwinds Communities Lodge Christmas COVID-19 Precaustions
Westwinds Communities is pleased to report that the COVID-19 outbreak for Sandstone Lodge has concluded and we are no longer under outbreak restrictions. Thank you to our residents for their cooperation and support. A very special thank you is extended to our staff for their diligence, sacrifice and bravery in the face of COVID. Westwinds was fortunate with our safety precautions to keep the outbreak to one employee and the resident impact limited to twelve days.
An open letter to Albertans from Alberta Seniors & Community Housing Association.
Our Front-line “Superheroes” Need All Albertans To Be Their Sidekicks
This is an open letter to Albertans. Since the initial measures that were implemented back in March at the onset of the pandemic, our front-line workers in seniors housing and care have implemented rigorous measures to keep our most vulnerable safe, in the settings they choose to call home.
Sandstone Lodge Update to Residents, Employees and Family Members
December 9th, 2020
Westwinds is pleased to report that all residents and staff have received COVID-19 testing and no new cases have been confirmed. Due to our low risk residents are able to resume meals in the dining room and walking in and around the lodge while masked.
Our residents are so happy!
Sandstone Lodge Update to Residents, Employees and Family Members
December 7th, 2020
Westwinds Communities is pleased to report that the lodge residents are being tested for COVID-19 today. Each resident will receive their own test results. We would appreciate if you could please notify the lodge of your test results by calling 403-938-6404.
Sandstone Lodge Update to Residents, Employees and Family Members
December 4th, 2020
At Westwinds, we care. We care about our people, our properties and the communities we call home. We are pleased to report no new COVID-19 symptoms today. Total COVID cases remains at one employee.
December 3, 2020
Confirmed COVID-19 Case – Sandstone Lodge
We are writing to notify you that the probable case of COVID-19, reported on December 1st, has been upgraded to a confirmed case at Sandstone Lodge.
We share this disheartening news as well as the concern and uncertainty that goes with it. Outbreak protocols are now in place.
November 24th, 2020
Medicine Tree Manor Restrictions – Community Exposure
Unfortunately the COVID-19 risk in the High River areas is significant and exceeds the 0.1% population threshold of active COVID-19 community cases as the benchmark for temporarily suspending suite visitation and overnight visit/admission relaxations.
November 18th, 2020
COVID- Restrictions Community Exposure
Westwinds Communities continues to closely monitor COVID-19 cases in the local community in light of increasing positive COVID cases in the Calgary Region. Unfortunately the COVID-19 risk in the Black Diamond and Okotoks areas is significant and exceeds the 0.1% population threshold of active COVI-19 community cases as the benchmark for temporarily suspending suite visitation and overnight visit/admission relaxations.
November 13, 2020
Increased Precautionary Measures
Westwinds Communities continues to monitor and adjust to local COVID-19 protocols and safety procedures. Dr. Hinshaw announced on November 12th increasing pre-cautionary measures for the Calgary Area (our communities) to follow for until November 27, 2020 to assist in reducing and preventing the COVID-19 spread. These measures include:
1. Lodge residents should not attend social gatherings including faith based services.
2. Maximum attendance of 50 at wedding or funeral ceremonies. We request lodge residents to not attend weddings or funerals as these are high risk activities.
3. Lodge Hair Salon services for independent living tenants is temporarily suspended at this time.
4. The province has imposed restrictions on operational hours of restaurants, lounges and pubs and a two week ban on indoor group fitness, team sports and group performances. In addition, it is recommended all faith-based activities limit attendance to one-third capacity per service.
Westwinds also requests that residents and tenants remain diligent in practicing hand sanitation and maintaining physical and social distancing of 2m not only in the building but in the parking lot and designated smoking areas.
November 9, 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Restrictions – Community Exposure
Westwinds Communities continues to review and evaluate our progress with respect to the COVID-19 provincial protocols for supportive living. Westwinds has been closely monitoring COVID-19 cases in the local community in light of increasing positive COVID cases in the Calgary region. In late October, Dr. Hinshaw recommended additional lodge restrictions for facilities in Calgary and Westwinds has been on alert for approximately two weeks.
Unfortunately the COVID-19 risk in the Black Diamond / Foothills County area is significant with 23 cases as of today, 14 of which are in the local communities.
October 26, 2020
Home Care Service Interruptions
Westwinds Communities has been advised that Alberta Health Services (AHS) is experiencing wide spread walk out activity from AUPE members today throughout the province at health care facilities. AHS has an Illegal Strike Action protocol in place, AHS Management are in the area and working closely with AHS Labour relations and HR teams to manager the situation.
September 17, 2020
Westwinds Communities continues to review and evaluate our progress with respect to the COVID-19 provincial protocols for supportive living. Monitoring has continued for resident compliance, number of cases in the community and visitor adherence to lodge protocols.
Westwinds is pleased to be able to proceed to accommodate suite visitation for residents and guests effective September 28th, 2020.
Read More . . . .
August 21, 2020
Westwinds Communities conducted a survey of both lodge residents and their families on the indoor and outdoor visiting. Westwinds is striving for balance between the need for additional visitation with family and friends while considering provincial protocols, available resources and local community COVID cases.
This is what you told us:
July 21, 2020
At Westwinds, we care. We care about our people, our properties and the communities we call home. Thank you to each resident and their family and friends for the continued diligence with respect to COVID-19 safety protocols.
Provincial COVID-19 precautions in congregate living facilities (lodges, assisted living etc.) continue to be successful in flattening the curve. Consequently, the province has eased restrictions in congregate living facilities effective July 23rd, 2020.
June 2, 2020
The province has provided guidance on reduced restrictions.
- Residents who do not access Home Care services or have a designated essential visitor will have high touch cleaning reduced to once daily.
- Recreational activities for non-isolated residents are permitted while meeting these expectations:
- Moveable supplies (books, art supplies, fitness equipment) may be reintroduced.
- Group sizes may be increased to no more than 15 people, including residents and employees.
- o Transportation within our buses.
Residents should not participate in unnecessary outings. Should they choose to leave for reasons other than necessity, we advise them to:
- Maintain physical distancing.
- Wear a mask at all times and ask anyone they’re with to also wear a mask.
- Ensure safe transportation (private or public).
- The resident or visitor will ensure that the vehicle has been cleaned and disinfected prior to the resident entering, with focus on high touch surfaces.
- Driver and all passengers must be masked.
- The driver and resident/passengers will sit as far apart as possible, minimizing the number of passengers.
- Frequently use hand sanitizer and especially after having contact with high touch surfaces.
- Participate in a health screening upon re-entry to the Lodge.
- Residents choosing to stay overnight with family are subject to a 14-day self-isolation upon return.
Residents are encouraged to access health care services virtually or via telephone. If they must attend a medical appointment, residents should ensure the health provider they are seeing is aware of any symptoms they are experiencing, in advance of arriving for the appointment.
- They should book an appointment time where the resident’s potential contact with others is reduced.
- Ensure transportation is as safe as possible.
- We will provide masks for the resident to use.
- The resident should bring hand sanitizer and use after each touchpoint.
- The resident will be screened upon re-entry into the lodge.
- If the resident is absent from the Lodge for less than 24 hours due to medical necessity, they do not need to undergo a precautionary 14 day isolation period.
For additional Information please refer to:
May 1, 2020
On April 29, 2020, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medial Officer of Health, mandated new changes to the supportive living lodges. Westwinds Communities is implementing these changes with caution to ensure resident safety is maintained.
Changes include Outdoor Visits, Essential Visitor Service Changes, Status Changes and Resident Screening. Physical and Social Distancing and Hand Sanitation remains in effect.
April 23, 2020
The on-set of spring weather conditions has been a welcome distraction given our confines over the past few weeks. Residents and tenants are reminded that COVID-19 restrictions remain in effect and to maintain social distancing when using the pathways and parking lot on the property, and practice hand sanitation upon returning home.
April 14, 2020
On Good Friday, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer of Health, mandated new changes to the supportive living lodges. In some instances, Westwinds Communities has chosen to exceed the requirements for enhanced resident and employee safety.
Westwinds Communities is committed to the Health and Safety of all residents, tenants and staff. A list of Frequently Asked Questions highlights the measures that have been taken for the protection and well being of our residents and staff.
April 8, 2020
The provincial government has mandated increasing restrictions in all congregate care settings including lodges effective immediately.
Our Lodge residents are at extreme risk if exposed to COVID-19, and the Province and Westwinds Communities are doing everything possible to ensure their safety. We recognize these changes will have a profound impact on our residents and their families.
We are asking all family and friends to support their loved ones through the phone, video and any other means possible. Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer has mandated the following changes
- Lodge no essential visitors permitted except to provide personal care.
- Essential visitors are screened, must wear masks and are escorted in the building and are only permitted in the lodge for personal care that cannot be provided Home Care.
- Seniors showing influenza/COVID symptoms quarantined, the resident will be tested – Alberta Health Services will arrange testing. Family will be notified these pre-cautions are being arranged
- Westwinds will communicate to residents and families if we have any probable or confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Easter weekend is a family time but we request that no residents leave the lodge and that residents enjoy our special Easter dinner. We would request instead family be creative and visit on-line by having a virtual Easter visit with family or friends through Facetime, Facebook messenger, Skype, Zoom or apps like House Party. Alternatively, family and friends are encouraged to bring their lawn chair and visit through a window while practicing social distancing. Residents are not permitted to walk the parking lot or tour the grounds to visit with family.
A sincere thank-you to our staff, home care and our health care professionals for working to keep our residents safe. On behalf of our family to your, please have a safe and Happy Easter
Increased Security for Alberta Renters
The Government of Alberta is providing security for Alberta residential renters during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new protections mean:
- Effective immediately, tenants cannot be evicted for non-payment of rent and/or utilities before May 1.
- Effective immediately, rents will not increase while Alberta’s state of public health emergency remains in effect.
- Effective April 1, late fees cannot be applied to late rent payments for the next three months.
- Effective April 1, landlords and tenants need to work together to develop payment plans while the state of public health emergency is in effect.
As of today, no one will be facing immediate eviction from their home for non-payment of rent or utilities owed to the landlord due to job loss associated with COVID-19. Additionally, tenants will not face increasing financial pressure from rent increases or fees for late rent payments.
This new announcement may have no effect on those who have had no change in their income (for example seniors, AISH recipients or households on social assistance or income supports). Those tenants are required to pay their rent as they do every month. If they do not, they will continue to be responsible for the rental arrears in the future.
March 26, 2020 – 12:00
Please do not visit our community unless it’s an essential visit.
• Residents of our lodges are at extreme risk if exposed to COVID-19.
• Essential visitors are defined as those providing care necessary for the well-being of the resident and visitors attending to a resident who is dying.
• Essential visitors are restricted to one person at a time and those visitors must be immediate family or designated support persons only.
• Visits from children and pets are restricted.
• If you are ill with fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue or sore throat, please do not visit.
• No visiting in common areas permitted.
If you have questions, please contact us at 403-652-8600, or firstname.lastname@example.org
March 26, 2020 – 08:00
We want to provide an update to our response in order to maintain the safest environment for our residents, employees and visitors.
In addition to locking all doors to the lodge and controlling access to one visitor at a time; the Province has instituted:
Visitors are limited to a single individual designated by the resident or guardian (or alternate decision-maker)
Each essential visitor must be verified and undergo a health screening prior to entering the facility, conducted by security staff
Exceptions to these essential visitor rules can be made by the designated visitor for the resident’s family, religious leader(s), or friends to visit a person who is dying, so long as only one visitor enters the facility at a time
One essential visitor must be designated by the resident, or their alternate decision-maker.
Visits from the designated essential visitor are limited to visits meeting either of the following two criteria:
- Providing care and companionship for the well-being of the resident, or
- Circumstances where a resident is dying (see above)
We will alarm all exterior doors except where noted by the Manager.
Residents are still permitted to exit the lodge, but we encourage against it – and if they do, they must practice social distancing.
Residents returning from local regional holidays may be requested to self-isolate for 14 days.
We recognize the increasing restrictions are challenging, but be rest assured they are there to keep residents safe.
Chief Administrative Officer
Rent Relaxation for Tenants Impacted by Job Loss
For Westwinds tenant’s that have experienced job loss due to the outbreak, a request for rent relaxation may be requested.
Please download, complete and sign the following form and email to the community housing manager.
If you have family living with Westwinds Communities, please review the following information. Updates will be provided as they become available.