COVID crisis in Florida: A timeline of secrecy
Officials gather outside of Atria Willow Wood assisted-living facility in Fort Lauderdale on March 17, after two residents died. Between March 17 and April 6, seven residents died of COVID-19 at Atria Willow Wood, a 180-bed facility. The cluster of cases early in the pandemic – more than 20 residents and staff members were infected at the time – were among the first in the state at an elder-care facility, and became one of the leading examples of the danger of COVID to Florida’s 200,000 senior residents. Still, the state resisted providing any information about the virus’ impact at Florida facilities. (John McCall/South Florida Sun Sentinel)sun-sentinel.com
Widow of Willow Wood resident who died from COVID-19 tests positive
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Sheila Curren’s husband Richard died Tuesday, March 17, from bacterial pneumonia after testing positive for COVID-19. Now, the widow has tested positive for the coronavirus. The two lived together at the Atria Willow Wood assisted living facility until Richard, 77, suddenly fell ill and was taken to Holy Cross Hospital. Their son Erik Curren told Local 10 he wasn’t entirely surprised his mother tested positive. As of Saturday, Atria Willow Wood reported 19 residents have tested positive for COVID-19, six residents from the facility have died from the respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus.
Coronavirus cases at Atria Willow Wood in Broward continue to increase after 6 die of COVID-19
The 77-year-old retired travel agent and magician was the first Atria Willow Wood resident to die of the illness. De Santis first issued a ban on visits at long-term care facilities three days before Curren died. According to the Florida Department of Health’s Friday evening report, there are 56 COVID-19 cases at long-term care facilities in the state. CASES INCREASE IN BROWARDState public health officials reported 35% of the cases at long-term care facilities in Florida are in Broward County. Coronavirus cases at long-term care facilities in Florida (Coronavirus cases at long-term care facilities in Florida)CASES INCREASE IN MIAMI-DADEPublic health officials reported Friday evening the CDC confirmed nine COVID-19 cases related to long-term care in Miami-Dade.
Broward has 35% of Florida coronavirus cases at long-term care facilities
It’s unclear how many residents at long-term care facilities in the state have died of COVID-19, the infectious respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus. The Florida Department of Health reported 56 of the state’s cases confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are in long-term care facilities and 35% of those cases are in Broward County. Coronavirus cases at long-term care facilities in Florida (Coronavirus cases at long-term care facilities in Florida)Concerned relatives who have received notices from the facilities have reported more cases to Local 10 News. State officials reported the CDC confirmed 20 cases at long-term care facilities in Broward County. According to the state’s Friday evening report, the CDC confirmed 219 cases in Hollywood, but it’s unclear how many of those are at long-term care facilities.
3 more Atria Willow Wood residents die amid coronavirus pandemic
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Three more Atria Willow Wood residents have died in the last 24 hours in Broward County, according to Atria Senior Living, the facility’s operator. Richard Curren, 77, died at Atria Willow Wood in Fort Lauderdale after contracting COVID-19. (Curren family, WPLG)Out of the nine dead, six tested positive for COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus. "They were dressed in full garb.”Man transported from Atria Willow Wood to be tested for COVID-19Gov. Atria Willow Wood reported 16 residents tested positive for COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus.
Coronavirus pandemic affects 2nd assisted living facility in Broward
HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – The recent diagnosis of an assisted living facility worker in Hollywood threatened the safety of yet more seniors in Broward County. Minutes away from Lincoln Manor, a cluster of 13 COVID-19 cases plagued Atria Willow Wood, a much larger assisted living facility in Fort Lauderdale. (Curren family, WPLG)Richard Curren was the first of three Atria Willow Wood residents to die. He blamed their deaths on Atria Senior Living, the operator of the assisted living facility. Seven Atria Willow Wood residents remain hospitalized and two test results are pending as of Tuesday afternoon.
Relatives worry about those living at Atria Willow Wood after recent deaths
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Marc Hahn, 72, lives on the first floor in Atria Willow Wood in Fort Lauderdale, where several people have died recently after contracting the coronavirus. He’s been a resident, on the independent side, for a year. Hahn’s son, Raymond, visits his father through the window every day to check on him. “I am concerned he’s in there,” Raymond Hahn said. I just come to make sure he’s OK every day.”
Worker ‘coming in while sick’ caused 3 coronavirus deaths, DeSantis says
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Richard Curren was the first of three Atria Willow Wood residents to die of COVID-19, the deadly respiratory disease that is spreading in South Florida. DeSantis blamed their deaths on Atria Senior Living, the operator of the assisted living facility in Fort Lauderdale. The three residents who died are among the 13 who had tested positive for COVID-19 as of Sunday afternoon. After the three COVID-19 patients died, Mary Mayhew, the secretary of the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, said Atria Willow Wood wasn’t the only ALF under investigation for COVID-19. As of Monday afternoon, the CDC confirmed 14 deaths in Florida were caused by COVID-19.
As pandemic grows, South Floridas healthcare and emergency workers battle 'an invisible enemy
Already, some 20 firefighters total between the Broward Sheriffs Office and and Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue are in quarantine after being exposed, say union representatives for both departments. At least one firefighter was placed into quarantine after being exposed while responding to a call at Atria Willow Wood, a Broward County nursing home where three seniors have died from the COVID-19, and where seven others have been infected. It is unclear if that firefighter was infected.sun-sentinel.com
Operator of assisted living facility with COVID-19 deaths claims DeSantis is wrong
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Atria Senior Living, the operator of the assisted living facility in Broward County where Gov. DeSantis said two of the seven residents infected at Atria Willow Wood in Fort Lauderdale died. Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue has returned to the facility at least a dozen times to rescue residents. DeSantis accused Atria Willow Wood administrators of not properly screening construction workers and staff allowing them to work their jobs unimpeded. Richard Curren, 77, died at Atria Willow Wood in Fort Lauderdale after contracting COVID-19.
Gov. Ron DeSantis issues stern warning to assisted living facilities
Ron Desantis sent a warning to the operators of assisted living facilities saying they need to take responsibility for their residents during the deadly pandemic. The 92-year-old man was a resident at the Atria Willow Wood assisted living facility in Fort Lauderdale. The first death was confirmed earlier this week and the patient was identified as Richard Curren, 77, a resident of the Atria Willow Wood assisted living facility in Fort Lauderdale. The Agency for Health Care Administration, which oversees and regulates assisted living facilities in Florida, now has an embedded staff at the facility around the clock, according to Desantis. “If you are an operator at one of these facilities, you need to take responsibility for your residents and you need to take action to protect your people,” said Desantis.
Paramedics continue to return to Atria Willow Wood to rescue residents after COVID-19 patient’s death
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue personnel have responded to the Atria Willow Wood assisted living facility two times on Wednesday to help a man who was showing symptoms of the deadly respiratory illness. According to Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue, two other residents were hospitalized on Tuesday night. Several Fort Lauderdale firefighters and one police officer are on quarantine after being at the facility. Curren, 77, was living at the assisted living facility with his wife, Sheila Curren. The five Fort Lauderdale firefighters who took Richard Curren to the hospital on Friday are among the firefighters in quarantine.
Three dead at senior living facilities as coronavirus fears grow
We are changing the guidance on testing criteria, Mayhew said. We are going to paper the state with the emphasis by the surgeon general for the need to test these individuals. When someone is over 65 or medically frail and has a fever or difficult breathing, they need to be tested. If they are in the hospital for pneumonia, they need to be tested.sun-sentinel.com