Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Blountstown nursing home not allowed to accept new residents

BLOUNTSTOWN, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - What's being called a "fertile ground" for the coronavirus is also a local nursing home.
 We contacted the Blountstown Health and Rehabilitation Center
 for comment and have not heard back. (WJHG/WECP)
“Pray for your loved ones there," said local Cheyenne Bryant, whose grandma is currently staying at the nursing home in question.

On May 13, the Florida Agency of Health Care Administration issued an emergency moratorium on admissions to the Blountstown Health and Rehabilitation Center.

Under Florida law, the agency is allowed to suspend such operations if it determines the provider presents a threat to the health or welfare of its clients.

In this case, inspectors list several facts "justifying an immediate moratorium on admissions."

In the report, inspectors identified an isolation area in the nursing home, housing known and suspected COVID-19 patients. The agency then reports the rooms in the wing had no disposal area for personal protective equipment, thus staff would reuse PPE from room to room.

Inspectors even approached staff and asked about their PPE use. The report reads, the nursing assistant indicated she had not been instructed to change PPE between patients.

Inspectors also report rooms contained people who tested positive for COVID-19 and others, who though showed symptoms, had tested negative.

In the rest of the inspections in other areas of the home, the agency notes there was no signage warning staff and residents to take precautions, no PPE available, and room doors were left open.

Lastly, inspectors' records reflect 19 staff members between April 30 and May 7 showed up to work with coughs, fever, shortness of breath, and other symptoms.

These findings altogether are what led the agency to issue the emergency order.

Those with loved ones in the facility are worried.

"It makes me very concerned for not only my grandma but for everyone else's loved ones that are there that they thought were in a safe environment. I know quite a few people that actually work there. And it makes me sad they have to work in those kinds of conditions," Bryant said.

We contacted the Blountstown Health and Rehabilitation Center for comment and have not heard back. We also reached out to Blountstown elected officials and did not hear back.

According to the Florida Department of Health, there are 19 positive cases in residents at the nursing home at this time.

Full Article & Source:
Blountstown nursing home not allowed to accept new residents

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