By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
Two employees at Atria Park of Pacific Palisades, a senior living facility located on Sunset Boulevard, have tested positive for COVID-19, Mike Gentry, senior vice president of care, confirmed to the Palisadian-Post on May 14.
“Both employees have been in quarantine away from the community, following the advice of health professionals, and we continue to support them both during this time,” Gentry continued.
Atria Park, a residential community that offers assisted living and memory care, explained that the facility is continuing to closely monitor the situation at the community, regional and national level.
“We are diligently following guidance from the CDC and recommendations of the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health,” Gentry reported. “All Pacific Palisades staff members have been tested for COVID-19.”
In a letter composed April 28 by Chairman and CEO John Moore, Atria Park shared plans to test all Atria community staff across the United States, working with Mayo Clinic Laboratories. By May 12, Atria reported that more than 13,000 community and regional employees, third-party agency staff, and private duty aides hired by residents had been tested.
An additional 2,300 tests have been initiated by doctors and local agencies for residents and staff at Atria facilities across the country—which is about half of the total population in the facilities.
The reports of the two employees testing positive follow the death of one resident with COVID-19 on April 13. After initially reporting the death as due to COVID-19, Gentry provided a revised statement on Wednesday, April 22, that though the resident received a positive test, the cause of death was determined to be related to an underlying, pre-existing health condition.
“We are working tirelessly to guarantee we have the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies needed; provide around-the-clock support to our communities; communicate regularly and transparently with our residents, families, employees and state and local health officials; and actively develop new ways to keep our residents and employees safe,” Gentry shared at the time with the Post.
In response to COVID-19, Atria facilities banned non-essential visitors for the indefinite future beginning March 12. Ten days later, the facility began taking quarantine measures to help keep employees and residents safe, according to its website, which included limiting residents to their apartments and taking temperatures twice per day, as well as checking the temperature of essential visitors who enter the building.
Employees are reported to receive symptom screenings three times per day, including a temperature check. In-room meal service continues to be provided.
Gentry shared that the primary concern of the facility is supporting residents and employees.
“We will continue to work with the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health and are committed to sharing updates with our community as they become available,” Gentry concluded.
The number of positive COVID-19 cases in Pacific Palisades has reached 45, with three additional in the Palisades Highlands, as the Post went to print Tuesday evening. There were 39,573 cases across Los Angeles County and 1,913 deaths.
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.