OLYMPIA, Wash. - In February, the United States was introduced to coronavirus by way of an assisted living facility in Kirkland, where 37 people lost their lives.
Eight months later, 75 percent of residents at a similar facility in Olympia have tested positive for the virus.
Thurston County Public Health officials say an infected employee brought the virus into Garden Courte.
One employee says despite all of the precautions the long-term care facility took to protect residents from Covid, the virus “spread like wildfire.”
The outbreak inside the facility infected 45 of the 60 people who live there. Unfortunately, seven residents died.
Managers at the facility also confirm that 25 staff members tested positive for Covid-19.
Thurston County Public Health deployed testing strike teams to conduct further facility-wide testing at Garden Courte.
This is the largest outbreak in Thurston County, but it is one of several outbreaks at long-term care facilities in that area right now.
“Here in Thurston County our death rate is rising in large part due to outbreaks in our long-term care facilities,” said Dr. Dimyana Abdelmalek, Thurston County Health Officer.
Nanette Wilkins, Garden Courte Director of Operations, says the facility is working closely with health officials to rid the location of Covid.
“They are reviewing infection control procedures and testing residents,” said Wilkins. “Thurston County will continue to retest residents until there are no residents who test positive for COVID-19 and the quarantine period is complete for the last resident who tested positive.”