2 dead from COVID-19 outbreak

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, April 15, 2020

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The Piedmont Health District office, based in Farmville, is currently investigating an outbreak of COVID-19 at a long-term health care facility in Prince Edward County.

Piedmont Health District Director Dr. Howard Nash said two deaths have occurred in Prince Edward County and he was expecting more deaths this week.

The health district released a statement Friday, April 10, stating, “The novel coronavirus has claimed the life of an elderly Piedmont Health District citizen who was a resident of a local long-term health care facility in the health district.”

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Nash could not confirm the name of the health care facility that is being investigated.

“Because this is a current ongoing investigation, we cannot release the name of the health facility,” Nash said.

Nash did say that the facility was working closely with the Virginia Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to minimize the spread.

Nash said the individual who died from the virus was in their 50s. He could not release the gender or if the individual died in the hospital or the long-term care facility.

Farmville Mayor David Whitus, who is employed as the director of marketing and development for The Woodland, said there have been no deaths related to COVID-19 at The Woodland.

Just this last week The Woodland was found to be in full compliance during a COVID Special Focused Survey conducted by the Virginia Office of Licensure and Certification per instructions to increase infection control observations in all of their nursing facilities.

Calls made to Greg Ashley, administrator for Farmville Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center, were not returned as of 5 p.m. Monday, April 13.

In calling Ashley’s voicemail, his message greeting stated one staff member and one resident has tested positive for COVID-19, and they are being quarantined offsite and away from the facility.

The voicemail message did not mention the death of any residents at the facility.

As of Monday, April 13, Nash said there are three deaths and 61 confirmed cases that have been reported in the district. Of those, two of the deaths are from Prince Edward, and 14 cases confirmed.

According to Nash the second death in Prince Edward County occurred on Saturday, April 11, and was also a resident of a long-term health facility.

In the district, 69% of the COVID-19 cases are female, and 31% are male.

Nash says that out of the 61 cases, 55 of those have recovered or are on the way to recovering.