Long Beach now has 198 coronavirus cases; 5 long-term care facilities have positive patients

Long Beach officials on Saturday announced the number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 has risen to 198 people, up from 171 cases on Friday.

Broadway by the Sea, a long-term care facility, has now reported it has at least one positive case. There is now a total of five local long-term care facilities have reported coronavirus cases, but the city is not providing the number at each of because “the numbers may be constantly changing.”

In a statement, Broadway by the Sea said, “We are not in a position to release specifics about any of our residents. Protecting the privacy and and dignity of each person in our care is our responsibility.” The facility said it believed statistical information was being made available by the city health department.

The facilities are:

  • Palmcrest Grand Assisted Living
  • Long Beach Healthcare Cente
  • Pacific Palms Healthcare
  • Bixby Knolls Towers
  • Broadway by the Sea

Clusters of coronavirus cases have sprung up at nursing homes across the country. This week a spokesperson for the Centers for Disease Control reported the agency is aware of more than 400 long-term care facilities with cases.

In the meantime, California regulators relaxed guidelines this week for who can be admitted to skilled nursing facilities as health officials scramble to make room in hospitals for other patients. The facilities must now accept patients, even if they have not been cleared of the disease, causing alarm among advocates.

“Sacrificing the lives of beloved nursing home residents is beyond unconscionable,” Patricia McGinnis, executive director of California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, told the Los Angeles Times.

“California’s directive is nothing less than a death sentence for countless residents. The state should instead look to alternative locations such as hotels and conference centers as much safer places to send COVID-19 patients for care,” McGinnis told the Times.

Among the nearly 200 cases, about 50 people have self-reported that they have recovered, according to the city. They can only provide an approximate total because low-risk patients generally recover at home.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with a statement from Broadway by the Sea.

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Valerie Osier is a breaking news and crime reporter for the Long Beach Post. She’s a Riverside native who found her love for journalism while at community college. She graduated from Cal State University, Long Beach journalism program in 2017 and covered the Palos Verdes Peninsula for the Daily Breeze prior to coming to the Post. She lives in Long Beach with her husband, Steven, and her cat/child, Jones.
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