MISSOURI CITY, Texas - A Missouri City nursing home is responding to questions about its health safety protocol after reports of an outbreak of dozens of COVID-19 cases and 19 deaths.
Paradigm at First Colony nursing home tells FOX 26 it currently has 11 cases of COVID-19. They sent a statement Thursday evening spelling out the health safety procedures they’re implementing after Texas Health and Human Services told FOX 26 it is investigating the nursing home’s rash of COVID-19 deaths.
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After 19 deaths and an additional 62 infections between residents and staff members, Paradigm at First Colony nursing home in Missouri City says it is working with the state and county to monitor and respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, allowing those agencies to inspect the facility.
Paradigm sent FOX 26 a statement saying in part: “Our mitigation efforts include training staff based on the recommendations of the CDC and CMS on subjects such as: infection control protocols, handwashing procedures, thorough disinfectant cleaning procedures, and wearing gowns and gloves when appropriate. We are monitoring residents for signs of upper respiratory symptoms and other symptoms of COVID-19. Staff and essential healthcare personnel are likewise monitored for symptoms to restrict entry into the building for individuals with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. We have procured adequate PPE for our staff to care for the residents consistent with the most current guidelines.”
“I’m really not surprised to see it with the high numbers that we have within the Houston/Harris County area,” said Qiana James, founder of Friendly Faces Senior Care Agency. “That is to, unfortunately, be expected.”
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Friendly Faces Senior Care Agency cares for seniors both in their homes and in nursing homes and health care facilities.
“We know of nursing facilities where they had a big outbreak and all of the patients were asymptomatic,” said James. “We had a patient that recovered, and that patient was 93-years-old with no symptoms. And then you have cases where there are several that are dying. It’s very, very sad.”
James says her company has had an uptick in families choosing in-home care for fear of nursing homes. She has a word of advice for those whose loved one is still in a nursing home where visiting is difficult amid COVID-19 regulations.
“They don’t understand this virus, and some of them feel like there’s something that they have done wrong and that’s why their family’s not visiting them,” said James. “So staying in touch with them, having that constant communication so that they know that they are loved…. Many of the seniors are dying, not because of COVID, but because they are just basically giving up.”
Paradigm says it has made tablets and communication devices available to its residents so they can keep in touch with loved ones during this time of separation.
Fort Bend County declined to comment about the rash of cases at Paradigm, but did tell FOX 26 that 88 percent of those who died from this virus in the county were 60-years-old or older, and that’s reflective of weaker immune systems and underlying conditions that often come with age.