TEXAS CITY, Texas — Family members of residents of a Texas City nursing home said they still have not been contacted by staff at the facility to inform them of the COVID-19 outbreak despite what the staff there told KHOU 11.
Christina Aceves said her mother lives at the Resort at Texas City. She claims she still has not gotten a call from the facility, even though she is her mother’s emergency contact.
It has been more than 24 hours since the Galveston County Health District announced the 83 positive cases at the nursing home and issued an order for long-term care facilities in the county.
She said staff told her early last week her mom showed signs of pneumonia and tested her for COVID-19.
By Thursday, she had not improved, so staff called her again, saying they were sending her by ambulance to the ICU at UTMB.
She said hospital staff notified her of the positive test result, not the nursing home.
She claims nursing home staff never informed her of the COVID-19 outbreak, even after the Health District’s news conference Friday night.
“I’ve tried calling twice. They won’t answer. No one has tried to reach out to me," Aceves said. "I’m irate with them. I’m furious.”
KHOU 11 called the Resort to try to understand what could be causing the confusion.
In our 35-second phone call, staff initially said the staff member who answered the phone had "no comment," and when KHOU 11 asked why people have not been being notified, she asserted she had called them personally, and hung up.
The Galveston County Health District’s order issued Friday night said facility staff must contact family members “as expeditiously as possible,” either by “phone, text message, or e-mail.”
"We are telling them it is their duty to keep in touch with family members and let them know what is going on," Dr. Philip Keiser, the Galveston County Health Authority said on Friday night.
The symptoms of coronavirus can be similar to the flu or a bad cold. Symptoms include a fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Some patients also have nausea, body aches, headaches and stomach issues. Losing your sense of taste and/or smell can also be an early warning sign.
Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were mild.
But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk for becoming seriously ill. However, U.S. experts are seeing a significant number of younger people being hospitalized, including some in ICU.
The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.
Human coronaviruses are usually spread through...
- The air by coughing or sneezing
- Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
- Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.
Help stop the spread of coronavirus
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Eat and sleep separately from your family members
- Use different utensils and dishes
- Cover your cough or sneeze with your arm, not your hand.
- If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
- Follow social distancing
Lower your risk
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- If you are 60 or over and have an underlying health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes or respiratory illnesses like asthma or COPD, the World Health Organization advises you to try to avoid crowds or places where you might interact with people who are sick.
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