MISSOURI CITY, Texas (KTRK) -- Missouri City said it was notified Wednesday about 38 COVID-19 cases, 19 deaths and 24 infected employees at Paradigm at First Colony Nursing Home.
Mayor Yolanda Ford sent a letter to Texas Health and Human Services officials asking for information about how to move forward when it comes to notice of COVID-19 cases within Missouri City, the method by which she'll be notified of the cases and the mechanisms instituted by the state to address COVID-19 outbreaks in Missouri City.
"The city is concerned about the individuals and families who are affected by the Paradigm cases," Ford said. "This harrowing development speaks to the severity of this pandemic and how everyone needs to take it even more seriously."
Missouri City doesn't have local oversight and control of nursing homes within city limits. The state has jurisdiction.
"This lack of city authority is a challenge, especially during a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic," Ford said.
A release did not say when the deaths and infections occurred, only that officials were notified about it.
Nursing homes have been hit hard by the pandemic. Residents and staff represent a tiny share of the U.S. population but account for as many as four in 10 coronavirus deaths, according to some estimates.
Texas on Wednesday reported 236 new coronavirus deaths, pushing the total death toll to nearly 7,500. But hospitalizations in Texas dropped to 8,455, the lowest mark in a month.
Here is the full statement from Pardigm nursing home:
Paradigm at First Colony joins individuals, healthcare institutions, and government agencies around the world in mitigating the spread of COVID-19. From the start of the pandemic, we have worked with Texas Health and Human Services and the Fort Bend County Health and Human Services to monitor and respond to COVID-19. Representatives from these agencies have inspected our facility to ensure best practices are followed consistent with ever-changing guidance from the CDC and CMS. With their oversight, we have created a COVID-19 Recovery Unit dedicated to caring for residents with COVID-19 as well as a Step-Down Unit and General Resident Units to separate residents with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Currently, there are 11 residents with confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Paradigm at First Colony who remain in stable condition. Our mitigation efforts include training staff based on the recommendations of the CDC and CMS on subjects such as: infection control protocols, handwashing procedures, thorough disinfectant cleaning procedures, and wearing gowns and gloves when appropriate. We are monitoring residents for signs of upper respiratory symptoms and other symptoms of COVID-19. Staff and essential healthcare personnel are likewise monitored for symptoms to restrict entry into the building for individuals with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. We have procured adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for our staff to care for the residents consistent with the most current guidelines.
We appreciate the many individuals and institutions working together to care for residents at Paradigm at First Colony. We thank the dedicated staff at Texas Health and Human Services and the Fort Bend County Health and Human Services who continue to provide valuable support. Our community first responders, local hospitals, vendors, and their dedicated staff have been instrumental in coordinating patient care. Our Paradigm at First Colony frontline staff continue to inspire us daily as they provide patient care during this time.
We recognize physical separation from loved ones is challenging and appreciate our residents and family members respecting the visitation restrictions currently in place for the benefit of the residents. Additional tablets and communication devices have been made available to residents including telephone, email, text, Skype, Facebook, and other video conferencing platforms. We encourage family members and friends to continue maintaining contact with our residents through these platforms.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.