ATHENS — More cases of the coronavirus have been announced at Life Care Center of Athens, including one more hospitalization. According to an update from Executive Director Jeff Ricks on Wednesday, three residents of the center have now been hospitalized. The number of cases among residents has not grown, however, remaining at 70 positive tests to 27 negative tests.

“Our residents who have tested both positive and negative for COVID-19 are checked multiple times per day for symptoms or changes in condition,” Ricks said. “If a resident who tested negative begins showing any symptom that could be associated with COVID-19, we retest them. We remain in consistent communication with our medical director and local hospitals to ensure our residents are transferred if more acute care is needed. We are also checking in with their families frequently and providing as much support possible.”

The center is still reporting that four residents have died.

Two more associates have tested positive, bringing the total to 44 cases among employees with 73 testing negative and 18 tests pending. The pending tests include three active associates who have been tested and 15 who are on leave for various reasons and have not been tested.

Five employees have recovered and met CDC guidelines for returning to work, according to Ricks.

“If an associate tests positive, he or she is not allowed to return to work until guidelines from the CDC for returning to work are met,” Ricks said. “As many of our staff members have, unfortunately, tested positive, we have relied upon the Life Care network to provide additional staff. There are many facilities close enough and we are thankful to have sister facilities who are willing to send staff and help us. Any associate from another Life Care facility who works in our Athens facility will not return to their facility until they meet CDC guidelines to safely return to that location.”

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