March 19, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
In an effort to make it as convenient as possible for our residents to get the vaccine, we have coordinated with local vaccine clinics to arrive at all of our communities to distribute shots at the door of each residents. All residents have had the opportunity to receive the first dose and dates are being scheduled for the second dose. Communities will keep their residents posted on when the dates for the second dose will occur.
If you are a resident at one of our communities and did not have an opportunity to get the vaccine, please check with your community manager on what other opportunities are available.
What happens after you've received your second dose? Take a look at our posting on Do's and Don'ts when fully vaccinated to make sure you and your community continue to stay safe.
January 22, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
Washington State Confirms First Two Phases of Vaccine Distribution
Washington State health officials have released detailed plans for Phase 1B of the state’s vaccine rollout. Currently, the state is moving from Phase 1A to 1B. Phase 1B has four tiers of priority which are outlined below.
Phase 1A (occurring now)
- High-risk workers in health care settings
- High-risk first responders
- Residents and staff of nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other community-based, congregate living settings where most individuals over65 years of age are receiving care, supervision, or assistance aiming to avoid hospitalizations, severe morbidity, and mortality
Phase 1A, Tier 2
- All workers in health care settings
Phase 1B (Jan. - Apr.)
- Tier 1: People age 65 or older and people age 50 in multi-generational households.
- Tier 2: High-risk critical workers age 50or older in congregate settings, including grocery stores, correctional facilities, public transit, schools, agriculture, etc.
- Tier 3: People age 16-70 with two or more underlying health conditions.
- Tier 4: High-risk critical workers in congregate settings – like Tier 2 – under age 50 and staff and volunteers of all ages in congregate living facilities.
For more information
If you have questions about how this process will work for you or your family, please contact your healthcare provider.
Get COVID Exposure Alerts on Your Phone
Sign up for the WA Notify COVID-19 exposure notifications on your smart phone and you will be alerted if you’ve been exposed to any individuals using the App who have tested positive. For iPhone users, go to Settings and click on “Turn on Exposure Notifications.” For Android users, go to the Google Play Store and download the WA Notify App. Instructions and info are HERE:
Take Care of Your Mental Health
Recognizing that many of us are experiencing increased stress, fear and anxiety during this pandemic, the CDC has posted several helplines on its website where people can get immediate help in a crisis.
- Disaster Distress Helpline: CALL or TEXT 1.800.985.5990 (press 2 for Spanish).
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1.800.273.TALK (8255) for English, 1.888.628.9454 for Spanish
- National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1.800.799.7233
- Veteran’s Crisis Line: 1.800.273.TALK (8255)
January 11, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
PhaseFinder Tool Launches to Determine Vaccine Eligibility
The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) launched a new tool on January 6 that allows residents to determine their eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine. PhaseFinder allows users to take a survey to determine when they will be eligible to get the vaccine. If you register on this tool, the DOH will notify you by text message or email when you are eligible to get the vaccine. Contact information will remain private and will not be used for any other purpose. You can access the online tool HERE.
January 8, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
The Science Behind the Shots
The COVID-19 vaccinations underway across the nation hold great promise for ending the pandemic. Having shown over 90% effectiveness during their trials, the first two approved vaccines also herald a scientific advance that could help overcome other diseases. Known as messenger RNA, or mRNA, vaccines, they work by sending your body the genetic instructions for building a single part of the virus causing COVID-19 – in particular, a protein found on its surface. This process creates “what can be described as a memory of the virus in our cells. With that genetic information in place, when your body encounters the actual virus, it reacts by making specific antibodies that block cells with this signature protein,” reports AARP. The vaccines also get immune cells known as T-cells involved in the fight against the virus. The mRNA vaccines can be produced more quickly and easily than other kinds of vaccinations, such as those for flu and measles. The latter take a different scientific approach, inserting “a weakened or inactivated germ into the body to trigger an immune response.” While mRNA science is getting a lot of publicity now because of COVID-19, researchers began working on this approach over two decades ago and it has already been used in treating some cancers and in other vaccine trials. To learn more about the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, visit http://bit.ly/3rUCzu4 and http://bit.ly/3b3JJq1.
January 6, 2021 - COVID-19 Update
Washington State Confirms First Two Phases of Vaccine Distribution
On January 6, 2021, Washington state health officials detailed plans for Phase 1B of the state's vaccine rollout. Currently, the state remains in Phase 1a which has two tiers of priority. Phase 1b has four tiers of priority and will likely not begin until after January.
Phase 1a (occurring now)
- High-risk workers in health care settings
- High-risk first responders
- Residents and staff of nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other community-based, congregate living settings where most individuals over 65 years of age are receiving care, supervision, or assistance aiming to avoid hospitalizations, severe morbidity, and mortality
Phase 1a, tier 2 (late January through April)
- All workers in health care settings
(estimated timing, after January)
- Tier 1: People age 70 or older and people age 50 or in multi-generational households.
- Tier 2: High-risk critical workers age 50 or older in congregate settings, including grocery stores, correctional facilities, public transit, schools, agriculture, etc.
- Tier 3: People age 16-70 with two or more underlying health conditions.
- Tier 4: High-risk critical workers in congregate settings - like Tier 2 - under age 50 and staff and volunteers of all ages in congregate living facilities.
If you have questions about how this process will work for you or your family, please contact your health-care provider.
PhaseFinder Tool Launches to Determine Vaccine Eligibility
The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) has launched a new tool that allows residents to determine their eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine. Called PhaseFinder, the tool allows users to take a survey to determine when they will be eligible to get the vaccine. If you register on this tool, the DOH will notify you by text message or email when you are eligible. Contact information will remain private and will not be used for any other purpose. You can access the online tool HERE.
Estimated Timeline for All Washington Residents
This chart is an estimated timeline for the first two phases and may change as more information becomes available.
December 24, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
A Welcome Holiday Arrival: The COVID-19 Vaccine
Among the season’s joyous tidings is the arrival of COVID-19 vaccines, with people nationwide already getting their first round of injections. Here are answers from the Washington State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control, or CDC, to frequently asked questions about what is taking place:
Who has priority for receiving the vaccinations?
The CDC recommends that initial supplies be offered in Phase 1a to healthcare workers and long-term care residents. Phase 1b is expected in January and would include adults ages 75 and older, and frontline workers such as teachers, police officers, fire fighters, and grocery store workers. Phase 1c, which may start in February, would include adults 65 and older, along with people with underlying medical conditions that put them at higher risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19.
How many doses are necessary to be protected?
You need two doses of the currently available COVID-19 vaccines, getting your second shot three week after the first one.
How much does it cost?
The COVID-19 vaccine is free, regardless of an individual’s health coverage.
Will I get side effects?
Side effects might occur as a normal sign that your body is building protection in response to the vaccination. They may feel like the flu, such as a fever, headaches and muscle aches, and they should go away in a few days.
Do I still need to wear a mask and social distance after I’ve had both vaccine doses?
Yes. As experts learn more about the protection COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it is important to continue using all the tools available to help stop the pandemic. These include covering your mouth and nose with a mask, washing your hands often, and staying at least 6 feet away from others.
December 15, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs
Will the COVID-19 vaccine really help me from getting sick with COVID-19?
While many people with COVID-19 have only a mild illness, others may get a severe illness or they may even die. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you, even if you are not at increased risk of severe complications. If you get sick, you may also spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you while you are sick. COVID-19 vaccination helps protect you by creating an antibody response, without having to experience sickness.
Will the COVID-19 vaccine give me COVID-19?
None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. There are several different types of vaccines in development. However, the goal for each of them is to teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means, it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, just before or just after vaccination, and get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.
Who will get priority for the vaccine?
Because the current supply of COVID-19 vaccine in the United States is limited, the CDC recommends that initial supplies of COVID-19 vaccine be offered to healthcare workers and residents in long-term care facilities.
The second phase is essential workers like police, firefighters, transportation workers, and teachers. The next round of vaccines is expected in January or early February, and they plan to get those out to people 65 and over with co-morbidities.
With new vaccines getting approved, the vaccine supply will increase in the weeks and months to come. Once a vaccine is widely available, the plan is to have several thousand vaccination providers offering COVID-19 vaccines in doctors’ offices, retail pharmacies, hospitals, and federally qualified health centers.
How many doses of the vaccine will I need in order to be protected?
You need two doses of the currently available (Pfizer) COVID-19 vaccine. A second shot three weeks after your first shot is needed to get the most protection the vaccine has to offer.
How much will it cost?
The COVID-19 vaccine will be free, regardless what kind of health coverage an individual has. The policy is the result of new federal rules that removes cost as a barrier to getting vaccinated.
Will the vaccine cause side effects?
After COVID-19 vaccination, you may have some side effects. This is a normal sign that your body is building protection. The side effects from vaccination may feel like flu (fever, muscle aches) and might affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days.
Will the COVID-19 vaccine cause me to test positive on COVID-19 viral tests?
Vaccines currently approved or in clinical trials in the United States won’t cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection. If your body develops an immune response, which is the goal of vaccination, there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus.
If I’ve already had COVID-19, should I still get vaccinated?
Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection with COVID-19 is possible, people may be advised to get a COVID-19 vaccine even if they have been sick with COVID-19 before.
Do I still need to wear a mask and social distance after I’ve had two doses of the vaccine?
While experts learn more about the protection COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us to help stop this pandemic, like covering your mouth and nose with a mask, washing hands often, and staying at least 6-feet away from others.
Should someone who has a current COVID-19 infection be vaccinated?
Vaccination should be deferred until recovery from acute illness. Persons with documented acute infection in the preceding 90 days may defer vaccination until the end of the 90-day period, if desired.
December 11, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
Can You Boost Your Immune System?
During the pandemic, most of us are looking for ways to stay healthy. We know that face coverings, social distancing, and hand washing are proven methods to reduce your chance of exposure. But what about improving your immune system? According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, there is no silver bullet to boost your immune system, but there are three everyday things you can do that will help. These include:
- Sleep – If you don’t get enough sleep, your body has a harder time preventing illness. Studies show that individuals who sleep six hours or less a night are four times more likely to catch a cold than those who sleep seven hours a night. The reason? When you sleep, your body produces proteins that are responsible for fighting infection and reducing inflammation.
- Eating well – Research shows that a balanced diet with a range of vitamins and minerals can positively help your immune cells. The combination of nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, selenium, iron and protein can help immune cells function. Highly processed foods like chips, lunch meats, cookies and sugary drinks can negatively affect your immune system.
- Reducing stress – Stress hormones lower your body’s ability to fight infection. A few tips to reduce stress: 1) Stick to a routine during the pandemic. 2) Find ways to exercise or get your heart rate up for 20 minutes a day. Talk to your physician about a program that is right for you. 3) Mindfulness meditation has been proven to decrease stress and improve focus.
November 27, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
New COVID-19 Restrictions in Place Until January 4th
With the current alarming surge in COVID-19 cases in our state and nationwide, Washington state has new restrictions in place to help slow the spread of the virus. The full list of restrictions can be found at HERE. Notable restrictions include:
- Indoor social gatherings with people from outside your household are prohibited unless they (a) quarantine for 14 days prior to the social gathering; or (b) quarantine for 7 days prior to the social gathering and receive a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 48-hours prior to the gathering.
- Outdoor social gatherings shall be limited to 5 people from outside your household.
- Restaurants and bars are closed for indoor dine-in service. Outdoor dining and to-go service are permitted, with table sizes seating a maximum of 5 people.
- In-store retail shall be limited to 25% of occupancy limits.
- Religious services are limited to 25% of indoor occupancy limits, or no more than 200 people, whichever is fewer.
- Personal services are limited to 25% of indoor occupancy limits.
- Long-term care facilities: Outdoor visits are permitted. Indoor visits are prohibited, but individual exceptions for an essential support person or end-of-life care are permitted.
August 31, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
How is SHAG Responding to COVID-19 & Ensuring Community Safety?
We care deeply about our residents, communities, and staff and therefore have implemented multiple strategies to maintain their health and safety. Our on-site staff have been trained on social distancing guidelines and adhere to recommendations provided by the CDC and local public health authorities.
Before the start of their workday, each staff member is asked a series of questions regarding their health and any contact they may have had with someone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. Each staff member also has their temperature taken – anyone with a temperature of 100.4 and above is sent home until he/she has had no fever for at least 3 days and it has been at least 7 days since the symptoms began. All staff members are required to wear face masks while moving through the office, engaging with other staff or residents, or when in common areas.
Our on-site staff cleans and disinfects all common areas throughout the business day. Amenity spaces have been closed for health and safety reasons; they will open back up during Phase 4 of the Governor’s phased approach plan.
In order to adhere to social distancing guidelines, we ask that if you need to speak with a member of our staff, please reach out by calling your community directly, calling our Resident Experience Center at 1-888-450-SHAG, or sending your community manager an email. If you have an emergency or urgent work order, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at the Resident Experience Center, 1-888-450-SHAG, option #2. Callers: Be aware, the Resident Experience Center team may be experiencing higher than normal call volumes, and there may be a wait.
Resources Assistance: As a reminder, residents who need assistance with resources during this time, such as acquiring groceries, should contact their Resident Services Coordinator.
For more information about the Governor’s order and the phased approach plan to open the state over the next few months, visit coronavirus.wa.gov.
June 25, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
When am I required to wear a face mask or cloth face covering?
On June 26, a statewide order will require individuals to wear a face covering in indoor public spaces such as stores, offices, and restaurants. The order also requires face coverings outdoors when you can't stay 6 feet apart from others.
There are exemptions, however, including people with certain disabilities or health conditions, people who are deaf or hard of hearing, and children under the age of 5 (though it's encouraged to have children ages 3-5 wear a covering if possible). There are also situations when you can remove your face covering, such as when seated at a restaurant or when recreating alone.
You do not need to wear face coverings in your home when you are only with people in your household, or when you are alone in your car. You do not need to wear one when you are outdoors and people are far apart.
June 17, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
Community Common Areas to Open in Phase 4
As the counties progress through the Governor’s four-phase reopening plan, many residents are asking when the common areas in the communities will reopen.
Governor Inslee asks that people at high risk for COVID-19, which includes those 65 and above as well as individuals with underlying medical conditions, continue to Stay at Home, Stay Healthy until Phase 4 of his reopening plan starts.
In keeping with this policy to protect health, the common areas will remain closed until that time. Phase 4 may begin mid-summer, depending on COVID-19 case trends.
Face Coverings Offer Protection and Respect for Others
In keeping with the directive for many Washington counties, we ask that team members and residents wear face coverings in indoor and outdoor public areas when social distancing guidelines are difficult to follow. Face coverings are proving to help slow the spread of the virus, but also demonstrate that we are all respecting the fears and anxieties of those around us. Dr. Jeff Duchin, King County Health Officer, explains, “By wearing a face mask, we protect others from COVID-19 and show that we care. Your mask protects me and my mask protects you. Be safe, maintain space and cover your face.”
Thank you for your cooperation in keeping everyone safe!
May 1, 2020 - COVID-19 Update
Stay Home Order Extended to May 31
On May 1, Gov. Jay Inslee extended Washington State’s Stay Home - Stay Healthy order to May 31.
We know this is disappointing news for our residents and families and a challenge for those requiring basic needs and connection to others.
We appreciate everything our residents are doing to keep themselves and each other safe, such as social distancing, frequent handwashing, limiting visitors, mask-wearing, leaving only for essentials, and communicating with your doctor and staying in your apartment if you are feeling ill.
Resources Assistance: As a reminder, residents who need assistance with resources during this time, such as accessing groceries, should contact their Resident Services Coordinator.
For more information about the Governor’s order and the phased approach planned to open the state over the next few months, visit coronavirus.wa.gov.
April 2, 2020 – COVID-19 Update
Gov. Jay Inslee Extends Stay at Home Order
Our resident’s health and safety are our top priority. Washington State’s “Stay at Home” public health order has been extended by Gov. Jay Inslee until May 4 in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. It requires everyone to stay at home except for essential needs.
March 23, 2020 – COVID-19 Update
Gov. Jay Inslee’s Stay at Home Order Announced
Resident Q & A
Our resident’s health and safety are our top priority. An important “Stay at Home” public health order has been announced this evening by Gov. Jay Inslee to fight the spread of COVID-19. It requires everyone to stay at home except for essential needs. This measure will go into effect in 48 hours (March 25, 2020 at 5:30 pm), will last for a minimum of two weeks, and may be extended. Events in recent days have been fast-moving and we want to be sure you have the answers to important questions about this order:
What does the “Stay at Home” order mean?
Washington residents are required to stay home except to get food or medical care. Taking a walk outdoors is permitted as long as you are alone or practicing social distancing if you are out with others. When outside for any reason, stay at least six feet away from other people. For more information, visit https://coronavirus.wa.gov.
What is still open?
Essential municipal and health services are open, including hospitals, clinics and healthcare operations; police and fire stations; public transit; and public utilities. Other open services include pharmacies, grocery stores, food banks, pick-up and delivery restaurants, banks, and gas stations. More information is available at https://coronavirus.wa.gov/.
Is the community staff still working?
Yes. We are dedicated to our residents and communities, and our services on your behalf are defined as essential under this order. In our efforts to adhere to social distancing, we ask that if you need to talk to a staff member, please reach out via phone, email, or by calling our Contact Center at (888) 450-SHAG during normal business hours.
What if I need assistance from the resident service coordinator?
Our resident service coordinators will be available to you, but off site at this time. If you need help getting connected to food sources or prescriptions; or information about services interruptions, job loss or rental assistance, please contact your community’s resident service coordinator by phone or email.
Will the building be maintained?
Yes. Key services are continuing, including emergency and urgent work orders, garbage and recycling, and disinfecting and cleaning of common areas. To submit a work order for an urgent need, please email us at email@example.com, or call us at the Contact Center at (844) 962-7424 option # 2 . Callers: Be aware that the Contact Center team may be experiencing higher than normal call volumes at this time and that there may be a wait.
Is community transportation available?
Yes. If your community has a van, transportation to grocery stores and food banks will be provided. In addition, if your community has a Nissan Leaf vehicle, it may be used, but only to go to grocery stores, food banks and/or pharmacies.
Can I use community amenities?
No. Unfortunately, we need to close amenity spaces for the health and safety of everyone living and working in the community. Lobbies and pea patches will also be closed down to prevent gatherings and to reduce the risk of unintentional exposure.
Will there be move ins and move outs during this time?
Moving out is permitted. We will limit move-ins only to those who have no other housing options.
What if I need to talk to a staff member?
In our efforts to adhere to social distancing, we ask that if you need to talk to a staff member, please reach out via phone, email, or by calling our Contact Center at (888) 450-SHAG during normal business hours.
How do I pay my rent?
Rent can be placed in the rent drop boxes or you are able to pay your rent online. If you do not already have an online rent payment account, please call or email your community management team who will be able to assist you.
Where can I get more information on the public health order and on COVID-19?
Information on the latest state mandates, public health orders, and resources can be found at https://coronavirus.wa.gov.
We are being careful. Why do we have to take such drastic measures?
We know the COVID-19 pandemic is concerning and that this public health order will cause temporary changes to daily life and routines for our residents. We also know these restrictions are highly inconvenient and disappointing for residents. Preventing our residents from gathering goes directly against our mission.
Please understand that we would rather be overcautious with the health of residents than under-react and need to manage an outbreak in the community that may put lives at risk.
We understand that extreme social distancing is a huge sacrifice to make – but these sacrifices could prevent spreading this deadly virus to your friends, neighbors and family members.
Health officials confirm that the more we adhere to these practices now, the sooner we can get back to our normal lives.
We are all in this together and we appreciate your understanding and cooperation in keeping our neighbors, friends and loved ones safe.
March 11, 2020 – COVID-19 Update
We understand your concern for our residents and team members as this COVID-19 health issue evolves. I want to assure you that their health and safety is our greatest concern.
Please know that we are following the guidelines of the CDC and local Public Health Department to actively minimize the impact on our residents, team members, partners, vendors and the community at large.
While SHAG does not operate any assisted living or skilled nursing facilities, we are striving to follow the strict new requirements set forth by Gov. Inslee for those environments.
The precautionary measures we are taking include:
- Asking residents to restrict all visitors.
- Cancelling all community events.
- Limiting transportation to necessary grocery runs.
- Requiring any team members and residents who are feeling ill to stay home and contact their physician for guidance.
- Increasing the housekeeping and janitorial hours of part-time staff up to a full-time status to ensure cleaning and sanitizing efforts are taking place throughout the day.
These efforts include:
- Wiping down all high-touch surface areas throughout the day
- Community rooms cleaned daily
- Amenity spaces cleaned daily
- Lobby areas and areas where people sit and gather cleaned daily
- Common area laundry rooms cleaned and sanitized daily
- Common area restrooms cleaned and sanitized multiple times a day, frequency depends on location and frequency of use
- Community vehicles disinfected after every trip
- Staff members have access to hand sanitizer and Clorox or similar wipes at their desks and are using them appropriately throughout the day
- Our fresh air exchange system brings in fresh air to common area hallways four times a day along with HVAC systems being maintained and fresh filters installed on a preventative maintenance schedule.
- To support our residents, visitors and team members’ own efforts, we increased the number of hand sanitizers throughout the community for all to use.
- We continue to encourage frequent hand washing and good hygienic practices.
The precautionary measures we are asking residents to follow:
- Stay in your apartment if you are experiencing any illness.
- If you have health concerns, call your physician for guidance.
- Use a tissue for coughing or sneezing and dispose of it immediately.
- Practice thorough and frequent handwashing – washing your hands in warm water for 20 seconds or longer several times a day.
- Frequent use of hand sanitizer that contains more than 60 percent alcohol.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Social distancing – Avoid shaking hands and keep 6 feet away from others. Now is not the time to host gatherings at the community.
- Restrict your visitors. If you must have a visitor, host them in your apartment instead of community common areas.
Where we need support
- We understand that some residents are concerned about neighbors who are ill but are not seeking coronavirus testing or are putting themselves in home isolation. The concerned residents have requested we intervene and require these measures – which we cannot.
- We continue to follow the protocols and recommendations from the CDC and local Public Health Departments, but at this point in time, there are no legal, forceable rules or regulations that can be put in place for COVID-19.
- Only public health officials have the authority to legally enforce monitoring, restrict movement, or quarantine of an individual or group to protect the public’s health via a Public Health Order.
- Essentially, organizations and companies cannot require a resident or team member to be tested or to self-quarantine.
We will continue to carefully monitor the situation and communicate with you until it is fully resolved.
Thank you for your cooperation and understanding in helping us manage this very serious public health issue.