Berwick by the Sea celebrates frontline heroes after COVID-19 patient recovers

Berwick Retirement Communities celebrated their “Berwick by the Sea frontline heroes” and thanked them for successfully managing the case of COVID-19 in the Campbell River retirement building.

It was reported on March 26 that a resident of Campbell River’s Berwick by the Sea building had tested positive for COVID-19. That resulted in residents being quarantined in their suites for two weeks and a number of measures implemented to manage the situation and prevent a further outbreak.

The Berwick by the Sea team has been incredibly successful in managing the situation of the now recovered COVID-19 case at Berwick by the Sea. They continue to deliver superior service, care and compassion to our residents and their families during these difficult times.

We have received incredible feedback from family members and residents applauding this team’s extraordinary courage and service. Today, we wish to salute our entire Berwick by the Sea team of people and thank them again for the very important role they are playing in the global fight against the Novel Coronavirus.

Berwick’s Response to COVID-19

As we continue to practice social distancing in our local and broader communities to help curb the spread of the Novel Coronavirus, we thought this would be a good time to share all the things we have been implementing at our sites to bring you up to speed on how we are working to prevent COVID-19 in our communities.

To date, we have had one confirmed case in our Berwick by the Sea community in Campbell River. We rolled out our pandemic plan on the 24th of March, and managed to contain the virus to one resident. The learning we have taken from this experience has been invaluable, and with a better understanding of what worked well and what we may need to rethink, we feel even more prepared as we continue to navigate our way through COVID. 

Here are the protocols we have implemented at all sites to ensure the safety of our residents and our employees:

  • Outbreak policies in place at all Berwick Communities 
  • Berwick is closed to visitors unless deemed ‘Essential’ 
  • Examples of essential visits include, but are not limited to:
    • Visits for compassionate care (end of life and critical illness) • Visits considered paramount to resident care and wellbeing, such as assistance with feeding or mobility • Existing registered volunteers providing services as described above only 
  • Brio is closed to all visitors including Berwick residents
  • Brio Staff Members are now required to wear masks when physical distancing is not a possibility 
  • Active pre-screening for every essential visitor who enters any of our Berwick communities 
  • Single point of entry at all Berwick communities 
  • Enhanced sanitization and cleaning procedures 
  • All dining rooms and bistro’s suspended – door to door room service has been implemented 
  • Only disposables will be used for room service
  • All delivery carts will be sanitized between meals
  • Social distancing parameters in place for residents and staff 
  • Activities limited to ensure social distancing parameters are met – transitioning to a more virtual platform for activities via YouTube and Zoom
  • Active Living Team is coordinating virtual visits with family members (Zoom, FaceTime, Skype) 
  • Onsite Tuck Shop stocked with essentials so residents don’t have to continue to leave the building 
  • Active Living Team’s available to help residents with online shopping and ordering 

We cannot stress enough our heartfelt gratitude for your patience, understanding and tremendous effort during these unprecedented times. This situation is changing daily, and we are going to keep adjusting to it. This is a temporary approach out of an abundance of caution for your health and safety. 

In the meantime, we are grateful for our residents and employees. We have seen tremendous support from them and we are very thankful for their patience and cooperation during these challenging times.


Self-care Podcasts during Self-Isolation

Incorporating mindful practices into your daily routine can help calm anxiety and build healthy coping skills. The podcast industry offers some exceptional options that can help us achieve and implement mindfulness as we continue to work together to ‘flatten the curve’ and spread of COVID-19. Here are a few of our favourites that we recommend you explore – you might find something that’s ideal for you and your family:

Headspace – “Mindfulness for your every day life. Meditation has been shown to help people stress less, focus more and sleep better. Headspace is meditation made simple, teaching you life-changing mindfulness skills in just a few minutes a day.” 

10 Percent Happier – “Dan Harris, a veteran news reporter, breaks down the science of meditation in his podcast, Ten Percent Happier. Prior to making meditation part of his daily routine, Harris was skeptical about the importance of mindfulness and meditation. But after having a panic attack on live TV, he realized something needed to change, and now he is a believer. He shares his story, along with the science and benefits of meditation from experts on his weekly show.”

On Being with Krista Tippett – “On Being is a podcast that has been awarded the Peabody Award for great conversation and information. This mindfulness podcast talks about some of the most animating questions at the core of our lives, such as what it means to be human and how people really want to live their lives. These questions are explored in a rich and complex manner and applied to our 21st-century lives.”

Unlocking Us with Brené Brown – “Join researcher and #1 New York Times best-selling author Brené Brown as she unpacks and explores the ideas, stories, experiences, books, films, and music that reflect the universal experiences of being human, from the bravest moments to the most brokenhearted.”

Feel Better Live More – “Rangan Chatterjee, a doctor with more than 16 years of experience, hosts this popular podcast. Topics include how to stay calm and connected during the coronavirus pandemic, how to limit stress, and exercises that reduce the risk of depression. Healthcare professionals will find this podcast especially inspiring as Dr.Chatterjee’s approach to health is not to treat the disease, but the person.”

COVID-19 Resident Update – Heartwarming Moments At All Berwick Sites

April 2nd, 2020

A message to all of our valued residents and families,

We wanted to take the opportunity to thank you once again for your incredible patience, support and cooperation during this time. We have all been experiencing many changes in our lives over the past few weeks, and we know this hasn’t been an easy adjustment for anybody. We want to assure you that we are focused entirely on your safety and the safety of our staff as we do our part to help flatten the curve. 

As we continue to follow direction from our Provincial Health Officer and local health authorities and make adjustments to our current protocols, we do want to assure you that our entire Berwick leadership team is examining our operations to see how we may be able to bring some flexibility to our current conditions. In the meantime, we ask that you continue to adhere to our outbreak policies and please ensure that if you must leave the property, that it be absolutely essential. As per Dr. Bonnie Henry, the next two weeks is a critical time period for flattening the curve of transmission in B.C., and the single, most effective way to limit the spread is to stay home. 

We would also like to take this opportunity and update you on a change made to our company-wide housekeeping protocols. For in suite cleaning, we will now be requesting that you go to another room or exit your suite for the duration of the cleaning. Seating will be provided outside of the suite where you can wait. This protocol has been established out of an abundance of caution and to protect our housekeeping staff from further exposure. 

Despite all the darkness surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, moments of joy and laughter are plentiful at our Berwick communities. Here is a broader, inside look into some special moments that have been occurring at your site and the other Berwick sites. These heartwarming moments uniquely capture the remarkable community spirit that surrounds our Berwick’s and something we feel is certainly worth sharing!

  • Social Distancing Dance Parties at Berwick Qualicum Beach:
  • Campbell River resident-driven car parade showing support for Berwick by the Sea Residents & Staff

  • Joining the ‘Hearts in the Window’ movement, Berwick Comox Valley shares its heart with the local community spreading the simple message of warmth, human solidarity and support for our frontline workers

  • This week, Berwick on the Park has initiated Soul Boost Visits for the Residents that include a weekly face to face with the General Manager and a soul-boosting care package

  • Spirit Day Wednesdays at Berwick House – you never know what to expect when you open the door on, but we can guarantee a laugh or two. 

  • An attitude of gratitude is in full force at Berwick Royal Oak where notes from families, residents and staff are on display for all to enjoy

  • Serenading Alma on her 100th birthday from the street! Family, friends and Berwick on the Lake staff were determined to celebrate this incredible milestone one way or another: (password is: 100) 

Now more than ever, we must saver these moments of happiness and joy. Fostering positive emotions can serve as a boost to our immune system, which we need to especially pay attention to during this time.

What we continue to hear is how impactful your messages of encouragement and hope have been, and we please encourage the continuation of the daily inspiration emails by sending them to this address:

We also want to take this moment to recognize our amazing site leaders who have been working tirelessly around the clock, constantly reinventing the way things are done at a site level. We thank them for their invaluable leadership and unwavering commitment to keeping you safe. As always, we remain vigilant in our efforts to do whatever we can to protect our residents and our staff.