FL: ALF Reports 4th Confirmed Coronavirus Case


by Kelly Wiley

Mar 17, 2020

At 7:41 a.m. Tuesday, families got another email from Jacksonville assisted living facility Camellia at Deerwood.

The facility that houses seniors already had the very first case of the new coronavirus in Duval County.

Less than a week after confirming an 83-year-old resident tested positive for COVID-19, the facility told families about the third resident and fourth resident to be diagnosed with the virus.

As of 11 a.m. Tuesday, according to the Florida Department of Health, there were six COVID-19 cases in Duval County -- five men and one woman ranging in age from 57 to 91.

Patricia, who is using another name to protect her privacy, sent the News4Jax I-TEAM the Tuesday morning email from management at Camellia at Deerwood. Her mother lives at the facility.

“It’s terrifying. It’s terrifying. If anything were to happen, she is up there alone. We can’t get in to visit. It’s not that she knows how to do FaceTime, so I can’t even see her,” Patricia said. “You can’t imagine how afraid I am.”

Patricia said she can’t help but see what’s happening at Camellia at Deerwood in the context of Life Care Center in Washington state. That nursing home has been referred to as the United States epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak after more than a dozen residents there died from the virus.

“She’s terrified. I’m terrified. We all know Washington state hanging over us,” Patricia said. “The fact that that could happen and snowball. We went from 1, 2 to 4. It’s unfathomable.”

In the letter sent out Tuesday to residents and families, the senior executive director said one individual is a resident of the independent living side and the other is a resident of assisted living.

“The Florida Department of Health (DOH) and the Agency for Healthcare Administration (ACHA) remain closely involved in addition to the medical professionals. At this time there are no remaining pending tests for residents,” said Senior Executive Director Renea McGrath.


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