For the past three months, Jason Rieger, the Executive Director of The Ivy at Watertown, has been preparing to open the newest assisted living and memory care community in Watertown, Connecticut.
Open Houses were scheduled for the end of February and throughout March — but then the COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019) crisis began.
The Open Houses have been canceled — but Rieger also knows there are still families out there who are making long-term care decisions with a loved one and who might need assisted living or memory care despite the COVID-19 crisis.
Here’s a look at how The Ivy at Watertown is handling COVID-19 and how The Ivy team is prepared to work with families who have an urgent need to move a loved one during this time.
Schedule an In-Person Tour
Construction was recently completed, and The Ivy at Watertown is open.
“We will keep doing in-person tours,” says Sondra Jones, Chief Marketing Officer for The Arbors. “We ask that you schedule a tour — so we can follow the CDC’s guidance to limit gatherings to 10 people or less and maintain appropriate social distance — and that you limit the tour group to two people.”
Make an Appointment for a Virtual Tour
Some families might feel safer doing a virtual tour.
To schedule a virtual tour, simply contact the community directly at 203-721-6466. You’ll reach Amie Hanrahan, co-owner of The Arbors and The Ivy and the Marketing Director at The Ivy at Watertown.
Hanrahan will start by getting to know you, your family, and your present circumstances. She’ll ask about what you’re looking for and what’s important to you. Then she’ll use her smartphone to give you a virtual tour of the community, showing you whatever you’re interested in.
“With a virtual tour, you can see the different apartment models and what each looks like,” Jones says. “All the furniture and decor are in. It’s not the same as an in-person tour, but you’ll still get a good feel for what The Ivy at Watertown looks like on the inside.”
Ready for Residents
The Ivy at Watertown and its Arbors sister communities have already been taking measures to ensure the health and wellness of residents and staff, such as:
- Reinforcing policies and procedures for contagious illnesses with staff, such as staying home when sick
- Escalating cleaning activities including disinfecting frequently touched surfaces daily
- Increasing housekeeping staff
- Limiting entry into a building to those persons who are essential to the well-being of residents
- Screening all individuals who need to enter a community for travel history, physical symptoms, and contact history
The Ivy and Arbors communities will continue to actively monitor the COVID-19 situation and make adjustments as necessary as new developments occur.
Need Caregiving Solutions Now?
So what should you do if you or a loved one needs assisted living or memory care despite the COVID-19 crisis?
The Ivy at Watertown and the other Ivy and Arbors communities are accepting move-ins. Jones says that most of the move-in process can be done virtually. Paperwork can be emailed. Assessments can be done via telehealth.
Once your loved one is situated, The Arbors and Ivy team members will do everything they can to keep families connected to their loved ones.
“It’s obviously a scary time,” Jones says. “Families need to be comforted knowing we are taking measures and doing what we need to do to protect our residents. In the other buildings, we’re delivering meals to apartments. We have the lobby blocked off so if families need to come in to deliver medications, we’re taking them there. We’re limiting entry into the building to essential guests in order to protect our residents.”
At The Ivy at Ellington, care partners are connecting families with residents through FaceTime.
“Mom was SO excited to chat with her daughter and catch up on daily life. #flattenthecurve," wrote an Ivy at Ellington team member on Facebook.
“Our No. 1 priority is the health and safety of our residents and staff,” Jones says.
To schedule a tour — virtual or in-person — contact The Ivy at Watertown today.