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NATICK – Mary Ann Morse in Natick announced Friday nine residents, who have died due to the COVID-19 virus or complications from the virus.

“The loss of so many of our loved ones is particularly hard on the staff and is reflective of the severity of this terrible disease. We offer our sincere condolences to their families and share in their grief. We plan to honor and celebrate the lives of those we lost once this crisis passes,” said the Mary Ann Morse Healthcare CEO.

As of today, April 17, 75 residents and 36 staff have tested positive for COVID-19.

Yesterday, April 16, the facility reported 8 deaths and 61 positive residents in Natick.

“When we learned of our first positive case of COVID-19 among our residents, we worked under the guidance of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and other local health authorities to take aggressive steps to prevent the spread of the virus,” said Mary Ann Morse Healthcare CEO Lisa Kubiak.

“We increased our monitoring of residents and staff to several times a day for any signs or symptoms. Any staff members with symptoms were asked to remain at home and self-quarantine. In addition, we immediately reached out to all our families to inform them of the situation and the many steps we were taking to prevent the spread,” said the CEO to families on Friday.

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The National Guard tested residents last week, and was back at the facility in Natick on Wednesday. the National Guard was also at the Mary Ann Morse facility in Framingham on Water Street testing.

“As testing has progressed, the number of residents and staff who have tested positive confirms that we are not immune to the same spread seen across all senior care communities in Massachusetts. Of the over 250 tests we have conducted, 5 residents at Heritage and 75 residents at Mary Ann Morse Healthcare have tested positive to date. We have also tested 124 staff members with 1 positive result at Heritage and 36 positive results at Mary Ann Morse. We continue to maintain the highest level of infection control protocols as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and are working directly with the MA Department of Public Health epidemiologist and the local board of health,” said the CEO.

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“We understand how incredibly difficult this crisis has been for our families. Our residents are your beloved family members, and you have entrusted our team of caregivers to ensure their health, well-being, and comfort. We never lose sight of our responsibility to protect and care for our residents as we navigate through these unprecedented times.
Since the day we implemented a no visitor policy, we have felt our families’ absence. To aid our residents’ well-being and keep you informed and connected, we deployed staff and technologies to conduct video chats and phone calls. We know though that this is no substitute to being in your loved one’s presence,” said the CEO to families.

“In spite of the pain and worry we all feel, please be assured that our staff continues to care for our residents day and night to fight this virus. While this crisis has taken away all the small daily celebrations of life and moments of remembrance, we trust that through all the efforts and sacrifices of our wonderful staff, we will make it through this. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, it may only be a spark right now, but as each day passes that light will shine brighter. We will get through this together and then we will all allow ourselves the time to grieve, remember, and
rejoice,” wrote Kubiak to families.

AARP Massachusetts sent a letter to the Massachusetts Governor this week seeking the names of senior facilities with confirmed COVID-19 cases made public.

2Life Communities have been very public releasing this information during the crisis.

“We urge Massachusetts’ Department of Public Health to release publicly the names of nursing facilities with confirmed COVID-19 cases,” wrote AARP Massachusetts on behalf of its 775,000 AARP members in Massachusetts.

“Contrary to concerns that such disclosures would violate a patient’s health privacy, we do not believe HIPAA precludes a state health agency from releasing the names of facilities because a facility is not a covered entity as defined by federal law. We believe transparency and notice to the public is critical for public health,” wrote AARP Massachusetts.

“Moreover, caregivers and family members need and deserve to have this information for their own health decisions and as they consider possible next steps and interventions for their loved ones,” wrote AARP Massachusetts.

The Town of Natick is not data on senior living facilities and nursing homes.

The state releases some data on these facilities daily.

By editor

Susan Petroni is the former editor for SOURCE. She is the founder of the former news site, which as of May 1, 2023, is now a self-publishing community bulletin board. The website no longer has a journalist but a webmaster.