Wendy Simpson, chairman and CEO of LTC Properties, Inc. (NYSE: LTC), participated in a video interview in conjunction with Nareit’s REITweek: 2021 Investor Conference.
Simpson said that LTC Properties weathered the pandemic from an HR perspective by pivoting to full-time remote work and even hired three new staff.
“We’re deeply grateful for what the government has provided in financing for our operators, and for the industry in total,” Simpson said.
Simpson said it was vitally important for LTC to work with its operators throughout the pandemic, and that the health care REIT was able to support its operators financially because it has a strong balance sheet.
“We tried not to overburden them with our questions about what was going on because they had so many other issues to deal with other than LTC’s needs,” she added.
Simpson said in conjunction with one of its partners, LTC has developed a smart design bi-polar ionization program that will help keep viruses out of facilities and improve the air quality moving forward.
Regarding sector-wide changes post-pandemic, Simpson said she expects the design of assisted living facilities to change, including eliminating the one dining room concept and adding more dining options like small dining rooms and places to get snacks.
“[With skilled nursing], you’re going to find more separation...spaces between beds and units,” Simpson added. “The first notice of a virus is just going to be jumped on like nothing we’ve ever seen before.”