Dear Cardinal Residents and Family Members,
Yesterday, North Carolina reported the highest, single-day number of new cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began back in March with a total of 2,532 new cases. Our state has seen a steady rise in the number of cases since Mid-September. Over the past few weeks, the rolling 7-day average of new cases has trended upward from approximately 1,200 cases per day to more than 2,000 cases per day. Unfortunately, this also means that the positive test rate is on the rise and is currently at 6.4%. As of today, more than 1,000 people are being treated in NC hospitals for COVID-19. We are moving in the wrong direction and now is not the time to let our guard down, especially as we head into cooler months and cold/flu season. Please continue to practice the 3 W’s; wear your mask, wash your hands, and watch for social distancing.
Surveillance testing at The Cardinal continues to go well and all test results this week have been negative. Residents can be tested for COVID-19 next Wednesday, October 21st between the hours of 8:00am – 4:00pm in the Art Studio. You will need to bring your insurance cards with you if it is your first time being tested with the new lab, Genetworx. This is the last week Independent Living residents will be tested on Wednesdays using this lab. Beginning the week of October 26th, we will begin our pooled saliva PCR testing for all residents, associates, and personal service providers. Cardinal associates and personal service providers will be tested on Mondays and Wednesdays. Residents will be tested every Tuesday, beginning on Tuesday, October 27th. Residents can be tested on Tuesdays in the Art Studio any time between 8:00am – 4:00pm. More specific information and instructions about this pooled saliva testing will be coming out next week so please stay tuned for more updates.
We are aiming for 85% or higher resident participation in this pooled saliva PCR testing process to allow us to be able to safely open up more dining and programming options at The Cardinal. How much we open up in the coming months is contingent on resident participation in our pooled saliva PCR testing. Increased testing for all residents and associates helps us maintain our bubble of safety around our community and gives us the confidence to make these operational changes to our Dining and Wellness programs. We hope to re-open Bleu, The Pub, and al fresco dining on our terrace – complete with outdoor heaters. We are excited about these upcoming opportunities provided by this new testing process.
Yesterday, approximately 150 Independent Living residents received their flu shot at our clinic. We are thrilled to see so many of our residents get vaccinated this year. Hayes Barton Pharmacy will be back at The Cardinal on Monday, October 19th from 1:00pm – 5:00pm to complete our associate flu clinic. Any resident who has not yet received their flu shot and would like to can come to The Family Room on Monday between the hours of 1:00pm – 5:00pm to receive their vaccination. Please sign up at the front desk by Monday morning so we know you are interested in coming to the clinic. Hayes Barton will be providing the high dose vaccine to residents who want it.
Early Voting in North Carolina started yesterday and long lines and wait times were reported for many of the early voting sites across the state. To help our residents safely exercise their right to vote this year, we will have resident volunteers in the Pub every Tuesday and Wednesday from 3:00pm – 4:00pm for the next two weeks to assist with absentee ballot voting. If you have received your absentee ballot in the mail and need a witness, please come down to The Pub for assistance. Rest assured, for residents who wish to vote in person on election day, we will be providing transportation to the polls on Tuesday, November 3rd. We strongly encourage absentee ballot voting or curbside voting at the polls on election day to limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
Today, associates in the 3rd phase of The Cardinal’s Career Lattice Program hosted an event to raise money and awareness for breast cancer. These associates hosted Making Strides Against Breast Cancer in partnership with the American Cancer Society and despite the inclement weather, the event was a huge success! We are still in the process of tallying all of the donations we received, but we are excited to announce that we far exceeded our fundraising goal of $1,000.00. As of this afternoon, we have raised over $3,000.00 for this worthy cause. We cannot thank you all enough for your support and participation is this event today.
As a reminder, on Thursday, October 22nd, The Cardinal will be hosting a First Responders Appreciation Drive Through Breakfast from 6:30am – 9:30am. First Responders take such good care of our residents and we want to express our gratitude for everything they do for us. First Responders are invited to join us at The Cardinal for a hot breakfast as they drive by the main courtyard entrance. Cardinal team members will be outside ready to serve them hot breakfast sandwiches, biscuits, coffee, and juice. We would love to invite residents to the main courtyard to help us thank our first responders.
Please come down on the 22nd if you are interested in helping recognize these essential workers who do so much for our community! If you are on your balcony during this time on the 16th, please give our first responders a huge Thank You wave as they drive by! (And don’t be alarmed if you look out your window and see several fire trucks and ambulances in the courtyard ).
On Monday, October 19th, The Resident Association Board Meeting will take place at 12:30pm. We will be recording this meeting to share with residents on K4 since they cannot attend in person. On Tuesday, October 20th the second round of our first annual Spelling Bee Tournament will take place in the Media/Gathering Room at 1:30pm. The top 5 participants who advanced from round one will be competing to represent The Cardinal in the Kisco National Spelling Bee in a few weeks. This event will also be streamed on channel 1341.
As a friendly reminder, we are currently using Bleu as a staging area for our meal delivery service. We ask that residents refrain from going into Bleu when a Dining Associate is not present for health and safety reasons. If no one is available to assist you, please ask someone at the front desk to call a dining team member for you. We will be happy to assist you with your request! Robyn Penick, Resident Relations Manager, is Manager on Duty this weekend and will be available to assist with whatever is needed. We hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
Tom Ford, Executive Director and Mary Casey, Assistant Executive Director