News of new clusters of COVID-19 cases at senior care facilities throughout the Bay Area continues to roll in, and as of Wednesday, the unsettling tallies of cases among both staff members and elderly residents is swiftly rising — leading to potential multiple repeats of the death toll at a Washington State nursing home.
We now know that there have been at least 65 positive cases* at the Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center in Hayward, in Alameda County — 40 of those are residents, and 25 are staff members, as KRON4 reports — and seven of the resident cases have already died.
Additionally in the county, in Castro Valley, 26 people — 17 staff members and nine patients — at the East Bay Post-Acute Center have tested positive.
Meanwhile, Neetu Balram, a spokesperson for the Alameda County Health Department, won't confirm the above numbers or disclose specific facilities, as reports like these continue to arise in other counties.
Mehrdad Ayati, a Stanford professor and doctor of geriatric medicine, said in comments to the Mercury News this week, "We need to be massively testing the skilled nursing facilities… These are going to be the people overwhelming the acute care centers. Community hospitals will be overwhelmed. Then we’ll have a high number of mortalities."
In San Francisco, the outbreak at Laguna Honda Hospital stands at 17 people, with 13 staff members and four patients having tested positive as of Monday. And another SF nursing home, the 378-bed Campus for Jewish Living, is responding to the state's call for skilled nursing facilities to help alleviate the pressure on hospitals by taking in COVID-19 patients who are either recovering from the infection or in need of hospice care. As the Chronicle reports, the facility is opening up a wing that will be isolated from all its other patients.
49 people tested positive in recent days at a skilled nursing facility in Orinda, including 27 elderly residents. Another senior facility in Contra Costa County, this one in Pleasant Hill, reported 10 positive cases on Monday, as the Mercury News reports. [Update: As of 4/10, the cluster at Carlton Senior Living in Pleasant Hill had grown to 21 cases, including 13 staff members and eight residents.] And a nursing home in Kentfield, in Marin County, has had three positive cases, and one resident in her 80s died there on Saturday.
Canyon Springs Acute Care in San Jose, another nursing facility, had 20 positive cases among patients and staff as of Friday, with 16 more test results pending.
Add to these San Mateo County clusters the Atria Burlingame Assisted Living and Memory Care — where there were five positive tests at last count, and two deaths — and the Pacifica Nursing and Rehab Center which has reported five positive cases and one death, and we can already see a tragedy unfolding at a larger scale than what already happened in Washington State. The first nursing home cluster there at a nursing home in Kirkland, Washington, found 80 positive cases out of 120 total residents, 30 of whom have died.
To date, in the Bay Area, this puts the total number of positive COVID-19 cases connected to nursing homes at 194, including both staff and residents, with dozens more tests and retests still pending.* So far, at least four elderly residents at these facilities have died.
As the Associated Press reports today from Southern California, a nursing home in Riverside had to be evacuated when all of its staff no-showed, following news that five employees and 34 residents at the 90-bed facility had tested positive for the virus.
Update: Governor Gavin Newsom says that 191 out of 1,224 large-scale senior care facilities in California are being actively monitored for coronavirus cases, along with 94 smaller care facilities where outbreaks have begun. Around 1,600 Californians, both residents and staff, have been infected at senior facilities statewide.
*This post has been updated to reflect the new confirmed totals at the Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center in Hayward, Carlton Senior Living in Pleasant Hill, the East Bay Post-Acute Center, and the updated total at Laguna Honda.