A California nursing home where dozens have tested positive for the novel coronavirus was forced to evacuate recently after a majority of its staff failed to show up to work for the second consecutive day, according to public health officials. On Tuesday, only one certified nursing assistant out of the 13 scheduled to work showed up. The staffing problem persisted into Wednesday morning, People decked out in masks, gloves and protective gowns could be seen wheeling residents of the Magnolia Rehabilitation & Nursing Center one by one on stretchers to ambulances that would take them to other care facilities in the area. At the time of the evacuation, the center was looking after more than 80 patients, 34 of whom have tested positive for the coronavirus, Five employees have also contracted the virus.
“We have a large vulnerable population at any of our long-term-care facilities, and we want to make sure those people are taken care of,” he said.
Riverside County officials say they do not yet know why many of Magnolia’s staff members stopped reporting for duty. But no matter how justified the reasoning, the employees’ actions rise to the level of abandonment. “Nationwide, all of our health-care workers are considered heroes, and they rightly are,” he said. “But implicit in that heroism is that people stay at their posts.” Since the coronavirus reached the United States, reports of nursing homes and eldercare facilities being ill-prepared and poorly trained making the facilities overwhelmed by outbreaks. “We are in immediate need for help to care for our most vulnerable patients,” he said. “We will provide full PPE. We will pay you and provide malpractice. The facilities you work in will be clean. We have an amazing team that is working on this night and day. Please come join us.”