coronavirus

Another Person Dies and More COVID-19 Cases at Dallas Senior Homes

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said another resident from Edgemere Senior Living has died and there are now 14 cases of COVID-19 at Skyline Nursing Center

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Less than 24 hours after announcing clusters of COVID-19 cases at senior living facilities, Monday afternoon Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said more cases have popped up.

Four people, including an employee, have tested positive for COVID-19 at Edgemere Senior Living, two of those residents have died.

At Skyline Living Center in Oak Cliff, 10 more people have tested positive, making the total 14.

"This is something scary for my mother she has dementia and I haven’t been able to see her.” cried Norma Barrientos, whose 79-year-old mother is living at Skyline Nursing Center.

“I just worry about her, I worry about her a lot and I know everyone else does too about their parents or whoever they have in there."

She said her mother, Mary, has lived at the facility for two years. Last week she was taken to the hospital because Mary was coughing and having a tough time breathing.

Barrientos said the test came back negative and her mother was diagnosed with pneumonia.

“So I’m hoping she didn’t catch something and take it to the nursing home, they say she was negative, but when they gave her the test, she was in the emergency room, they didn’t give us the results from the test for a couple of days, so like I said, I don’t know if she was exposed," explained Barrientos.

Sunday night Jenkins announced new guidelines under the declaration of local disaster that he issued two weeks ago to include long-term care facilities.

Some of those new rules state that long-term care facilities now have to immediately notify staff, residents and family members of those living there if someone tests positive for COVID-19.

In a facility where there is a positive case, all health-care workers must wear masks for patient care. Places with positive cases cannot admit new patients.

Also, staff members who work at a location where there's a positive case, can't work at other facilities. Information that's important for workers who float to other locations for services.

Jenkins suggested that if people should have a conversation to take their loved ones home to protect them from the virus.

If a family brings home a resident from a facility that currently has a positive case, the order states that the individual would have to test negative before going home, and the household would have to quarantine.

"I worry about her every day, I really don’t want to keep my mother there, but I don’t have any room here, I have a one-bedroom apartment and I have my mother-in-law already here with me," Barrientos cried.

She said they used to take care of her mother, but because of her dementia, she said her mother would wander off.

Because the nursing home hasn't been open to visitors, Barrientos hasn't seen her mom in about three weeks.

"That’s what worries me to death, I don’t want my mom to die alone, that’s what scares me. I try to be there as much as I can for her but like I said not being there for her is making it even harder," Barrientos said.

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