Long-term care facilities to begin opening dedicated COVID-19 units

Long-term care facilities to begin opening dedicated COVID-19 units

Nursing homes in Tacoma, Shoreline, Bellingham to handle patients from other locations

Three nursing homes in the Puget Sound region will open COVID-19 units in the coming weeks to house residents recovering from the coronavirus and to prevent its spread to other long-term care facility residents.

A total of 135 beds will be available at Avamere Transitional Care of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Richmond Beach Rehab in Shoreline and Avamere Bellingham Health Care and Rehab in Bellingham, according to a state Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) news release Monday. All three nursing homes are owned by Oregon-based Avamere Family of Companies.

“Long-term care facilities across Washington have made incredible strides in a short period of time to combat COVID-19 by practicing proper infection control, limiting visitors and quarantining COVID-positive residents,” said Bill Moss, DSHS’ Aging and Long-Term Support Administration assistant secretary, in the news release. “The creation of COVID-19 units is the next step we need to take to ensure we are protecting Washingtonians who are most at risk for getting the virus.”

The COVID-only wings will be cordoned off from the rest of the facilities and have their own entrances and dedicated staff. COVID-positive residents will be moved there after discharging from the hospital or transferring from another long-term care facility.

“The development of a COVID-19 recovery unit in concert with the state was a natural fit for Avamere in serving this need for our community,” said Elizabeth Burns, MD, Chief Medical Officer for the Avamere Family of Companies. “We pride ourselves on a history of proactive, highly skilled, compassionate clinical care. This opportunity has given our health care heroes the path to demonstrate what they were prepared to do. It is a rally call to serve and care for the most vulnerable populations with a sense of urgency, purpose and passion.”

Once a resident has recovered and has two negative COVID-19 tests over a period of at least two weeks, they will return to their original long-term care facility or other residential setting of their choice.

“We are grateful for the relationship we have with DSHS and their leadership in developing units like this,” said Brad Litle, Avamere Skilled Nursing Facility Division president. “It is a privilege to be a part of serving our community in this capacity.”

DSHS is in discussions with several more long-term care facilities throughout the state about opening COVID-19 units.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@seattleweekly.com.

More in northwest

A King County Sheriff’s Office photo of the crawlspace in which Urbano Velazquez was hiding when a K-9 unit was used. Sound Publishing file photo
King County settles $2 million dog bite lawsuit

The county agreed to pay $100,000 after being sued after a 2016 K-9 unit arrest.

Contributed by the Society for Conservation Biology 
A map showing the locations where plants have gone extinct in the U.S. and Canada since European settlers arrived.
Study: 65 plant species have gone extinct in U.S., Canada

More than 65 species of plants have gone extinct in the U.S.… Continue reading

t
Inslee announces statewide COVID-19 exposure notification tool

WA Notify uses privacy-preserving technology to help stop the spread of disease

Stock photo
Exposures at homes, workplaces, community and social gatherings spread COVID-19

Public Health—Seattle & King County report breaks down exposure settings; answers questions about spread

t
PSE electric rates to slightly increase

Natural gas prices went up a month ago

Sage Viniconis is a career performing artist in King County who’s been out of work and seeking creative outlets during the COVID-19 pandemic. Courtesy photo/Sage Viniconis
Puget Sound artists adapt creativity, and business sense, to pandemic

Artists Sunday is an online directory that connects artists across the county, state and nation.

King County Council has nine members who each represent a district. Courtesy of kingcounty.gov
King County Council passes $12.59 billion biennial budget

King County Council on Nov. 17 passed a $12.59 billion biennial budget… Continue reading

Tim Eyman get in some last minute campaigning for I-976 in downtown Bellevue on the afternoon of Nov. 5, 2019. File photo
Eyman fights allegation he repeatedly broke campaign laws

In a lawsuit, the state accuses the prolific initiative promoter of getting kickbacks.

Screenshot from Gov. Jay Inslee’s news conference Nov. 12 with his wife, Trudi.
Inslee to hold news conference to announce new restrictions

Among them, reportedly, will be a ban on indoor service at restaurants and retail limitations.

t
Inslee issues travel advisory for Washington

Joins Oregon and California governors asking residents to limit travel; self-quarantine