CEO Letter to the Editor

December 23, 2021

Dear Editor,

As we continue through the holiday season, Waveny LifeCare Network, on behalf of its employees, physicians, patients, residents, and volunteers, would like to take this opportunity to thank our many families, donors, and our communities for their ongoing engagement, outreach, and support. It is also time to take pause and to remember those who continue to answer the call by repeatedly demonstrating the dedication and passion they have for caring for their patients and our community.

While we remain concerned with the recent increasing prevalence of COVID-19 and its variants throughout our community, we are encouraged by our community’s increase in booster rates, ongoing testing, and vaccinations.

Not that long ago, the initial wave of the pandemic hit local and state-wide healthcare systems hard, with the critical factor being the disproportionate effect on the senior community. We are proud to have supported our local hospitals in the two yearlong pandemic that challenged our economy and healthcare systems at their core. Healthcare organizations like Waveny are not just brick and mortar, but composed of compassionate human beings, who were stretched, stressed, and often brought to the brink of exhaustion.

We have learned enduring lessons, developed community-based, public-private partnerships, pivoted to provide active, timely, and accurate testing, screening and vaccinations. While challenging, it further motivated those of us in our chosen profession to endure and perform at our highest capacities.

Despite these challenges, Waveny LifeCare Network’s Care Center retained its 5-Star CMS Quality Rating, while maintaining its 5-Star overall staffing and registered nurse staffing levels. From retirement living, short-term rehabilitation, and memory care to home and hospice care, our professional staff have remained engaged and dedicated. They are all incredible individuals, professionals, and heroes.

Regrettably, the fight and challenges are not over, as variants continue to confront our community’s health outlook. This remains a marathon not a sprint. We need your ongoing support more than ever. While our patients, residents, and clients have remained COVID-free since the first wave, we have pivoted to use technology including telescreening, telehealth, telemonitoring, and telemedicine to keep COVID outside of our organizations, and our physicians and nursing professionals actively engaged 24-7, 365 days per year.

Our commitment to charity and uncompensated care continues at $4 million per year, without any local or governmental support. While new local developments have dramatically increased demand for Charity Care from our senior communities, we remain emboldened by our non-profit’s 45 year-old mission of caring.

We respectfully and humbly ask that you to join our heroic team. We have applied for financial support from the government-directed American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to enhance our coverage and expand technological advancements with on-call nursing resources for our senior community and those at risk. We also continue to adjust our workforce strategies to adapt to the increased infectious risks from those outside of our care.

On behalf of all of us, happy and safe Holiday wishes to you and your families. We promise to earn your support each and every day, and thank you in advance for your continued efforts on our senior community’s behalf. May you and your family continue to be blessed.







Russell R. Barksdale, Jr., MPA/MHA, FACHE

President and CEO, Waveny LifeCare Network