IRVINE, Calif. — Healthpeak Properties (NYSE: PEAK), the Irvine-based healthcare REIT formerly known as HCP, released a presentation to its investors this morning updating them on the company’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Healthpeak confirmed that there are confirmed cases in seven of its seniors housing communities, of which six are managed by either Sunrise Senior Living or Atria Senior Living.
“In each of the affected communities, rigorous quarantine and isolation procedures have been implemented in close cooperation with local and state health authorities,” stated the presentation. “Regrettably, five residents who had confirmed cases of COVID-19 at two communities have passed away. We expect that the number of confirmed cases and deaths attributed to COVID-19 will continue to increase until the virus is brought under control nationally.”
Move-ins to Healthpeak communities have “generally continued to occur,” but with new residents often brought into 14-day quarantine immediately. The company’s communities have almost ceased in-person tours entirely, focusing on virtual tours instead. Because of this, the company forecasts declining occupancy in the near future.
Healthpeak also reported that costs have gone up as a result of the pandemic, mostly to do with staffing and supply costs. Some of the operators are offering wage premiums to ensure staffing needs are met, and paying more for scarce supplies to comply with infectious control protocols.
New protocols at Healthpeak communities include multiple daily temperature checks of residents and employees, limiting entry to essential medical workers, elimination of group activities and outings, and isolation of residents in their suites when necessary.
Redevelopment and internal renovation and construction projects have mostly been temporarily halted to protect the safety of the residents. In states where it is allowed, external projects where there is no contact with residents have continued, but Healthpeak expect disruptions and delays in those projects as well.