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Coronavirus In Colorado: Assisted Living Facilities Focus On Older Adults As Cases Increase

GREELEY, Colo. (CBS4) - Several deaths from COVID-19 outbreaks have hit nursing homes in northern Colorado in a short amount of time. Facilities are emphasizing their safety practices as the concern for this population of older adults increases across the country.

Centennial Healthcare Center lost 19 residents with 14 deaths attributed to coronavirus. Another five may be related but those patients were either not tested or the center is waiting on those results.

Another 15 residents at that same facility have tested positive for COVID-19. One of those patients was taken to the hospital while the remaining 14 are still at the center.

"Ensuring residents and staff have protection to keep them safe during this pandemic is of utmost importance to us," a statement from Centennial Healthcare Center said Thursday. "We are doing everything in our power to protect our residents and staff."

Five residents have died in the past two weeks and more than a dozen other residents have been presumed positive for COVID-19 at one long-term care facility in Brighton, the Brighton Blade reported.

The concern for this demographic has not only gotten the attention of the governor, who said Friday safety measures remain essential at these locations including limiting guests. But the White House Coronavirus Task Force also addressed the issue that same day.

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(credit: CBS)

"We do believe there is a relationship between age and seriousness of the disease," Dr. Deborah Birx said, the Coronavirus Response Coordinator. "Not to say there aren't younger people [...] but it's a small piece with serious disease."

RELATED: Latest Updates On The Coronavirus Outbreak In Colorado

Relatives of the staff working at the Centennial Healthcare Center told CBS4 on Friday they stopped by to leave supplies with employees. Local businesses did the same and one family member who says they lost a loved one recently, dropped off supplies as well because they were still concerned about the people working at the facility.

Others though are worried about the care their parents are receiving at this center. One man told CBS4 on Friday his father was moved from the facility to the hospital, he is worried his father isn't getting the nutrition he needs.

"We will continue to monitor the situation and provide updated information and education to the Center, staff, patients, residents and families, as updates become available," the statement from Centennial Healthcare Center added. "We appreciate the continued support of the long-term care community, and the agencies and associations that support us in our efforts.


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