A coronavirus case has been confirmed at Atria Santa Clarita, an assisted living facility, officials said Wednesday.
Atria Santa Clarita staff have learned that a resident has been diagnosed with coronavirus, according to an email to families from Johnny Ortiz, executive director for the facility.
“Prior to this resident’s diagnosis, all staff interacting with the resident had been wearing personal protective equipment,” Ortiz said.
Because the resident does not need acute medical care, the resident will remain in the facility, according to the executive director.
Dedicated staff members are caring for this resident only, and they do so while wearing full personal protective equipment—including a mask, gown, gloves and goggles, according to Ortiz.
“Rest assured that we’re prepared,” he said. “We have previously outlined our quarantine protocol, which has been in place for several weeks.”
Atria Santa Clarita staff are expected to continue to follow up with families regularly to make sure they have the most updated and accurate information on everything the facility is doing, according to officials.
The assisted living facility has contacted both the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and California Department of Health, and facility staff are following their instructions closely, officials said.
“Our staff are here on-site, and we’re experienced and trained in how to implement quarantine protocol,” Ortiz said. “Additional regional and national Atria personnel are supporting us to ensure we have all the supplies and resources we need at this time.”
Currently, the local health department is not recommending blanket testing of residents and staff. Facility staff are remaining in contact with the health department and will follow their direction, according to the executive director.
Also, a resident’s individual primary care physician can request or order a test if appropriate, according to public health officials.
“The community is taking extensive measures to monitor all symptoms. This includes screening residents twice daily and screening employees three times per shift,” Ortiz said. “This information is used to determine the best course of action on a case-by-case basis. This may include collaborating with the individual’s physician, as well as following the direction of the CDC and local health department.”
If a resident displays COVID-19 symptoms, the facility’s first step is to consult with the resident’s family and physician. If in agreement, the resident is to follow the physician’s direction to facilitate the testing, according to Ortiz.
“Our employees wear full (personal protective equipment) while attending to the needs of any resident who has tested positive and is in the community, or are a person under investigation, pending test results or has been exposed,” Ortiz said.
All PPE is removed prior to exiting the resident’s apartment. In addition, all community staff are wearing masks at all times, and wear gloves when delivering meals and medications, according to officials.
”We encourage everyone to visit your family member with a ‘window visit.’ You can bring a
notebook and paper with you and write messages from outside the community. If you let us
know in advance that you’re coming, we’ll make sure your family member has a notebook and
marker in their apartment,” Ortiz said.
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