ATLANTA — Holding pictures of their late loved ones, family members and several lawmakers rallied near the Arbor Terrace at Cascade on Friday.
The facility confirmed that 15 residents have now died of the coronavirus at the assisted living facility in southwest Atlanta.
“I’m not a health expert but obviously there’s a problem going on in the facility,” said Fulton County District 6 Commissioner Joe Carn.
The facility also told us that of the 37 residents still living at Arbor Terrace, 28 have tested positive for COVID-19. That’s more than 75%.
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Charlotte Hopkins’ mother is one of them.
“It is very concerning,” said Hopkins. “I’m glad that my mother seems to be getting better. I think this virus is new, so you never know.”
Some would like to see the facility shut down. But the interim director of the Fulton County Board of Health, disagrees.
“I don’t think the recommendation of closing the facility down at this point is a wise decision,” said Dr. Sandra Elizabeth Ford.
Ford told us taking such a drastic step at Arbor Terrace would present challenges.
“We would have to identify a new facility for them,” said Ford. “That would mean uprooting medically fragile individuals from one site to another, which of course would be an increased risk of infection even just during the transport.”
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In a letter sent to the families of residents, Arbor Terrace outlined some of the steps taken to stop the spread of the virus, including extensive testing and making sure the staff has the proper protective equipment.
The Georgia National Guard also cleaned the facility twice.
Hopkins does not want to see her mother moved, but does want her healthy.
“My concern is her being reinfected,” said Hopkins.
Carn says he’s working with the governor’s office on what can be done to improve conditions at the facility.
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