The coronavirus has now claimed 20 lives in Moore County.
On Friday, the Moore County Health Department reported two new deaths attributed to COVID-19. One of the deceased patients is a Hispanic man under the age of 65, making him the youngest resident yet to die of complications from the disease.
Both of the deceased residents contracted the disease through community spread, the Health Department said. In addition to the 20 deaths, over 780 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Moore County since March.
An Aberdeen nursing home and a Robbins daycare were both struck earlier this week by the coronavirus.
Moore County’s fourth outbreak of COVID-19 in a long-term care facility was reported Monday at Accordius at Aberdeen. Three employees of the nursing home tested positive for the disease.
Matthew Garner, public information officer for the Health Department, said all employees and residents of the nursing home have since been tested. The Health Department was still waiting on test results as of Friday afternoon, he said.
Formerly known as Kingswood Nursing, the 100-bed facility opened in 2005 on Pee Dee Road. Records from the Moore County Register of Deeds show the nursing home was taken over in November by Accordius Health, a Charlotte company that has acquired dozens of skilled nursing centers across the state since its formation four years ago.
An Accordius-owned nursing home in Rowan County was the site of the state's largest known coronavirus outbreak, prompting a lawsuit against the company and an investigation by the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.
Ongoing outbreaks are being monitored at other Accordius-owned facilities in Mecklenburg, Rutherford, Iredell and Forsyth counties. An outbreak is defined by the state as an occurrence of two or more active cases in a congregate living setting.
Accordius Health did not respond to messages from The Pilot seeking comment on the situation at the Aberdeen nursing home.
‘We Need Your Support’
A combined 12 deaths and over 130 infections are linked to separate outbreaks at long-term care facilities in Moore County.
Five deaths are related to an outbreak reported in April at Pinehurst Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center, with the deceased including an employee and four residents of the nursing home. Two residents of Fox Hollow Senior Living died in June of complications from COVID-19.
The outbreak at Pinehurst Healthcare is believed to have ended. An outbreak is considered over “if there is not evidence of continued transmission within the facility,” according to NCDHHS.
Four residents have died in an outbreak at Seven Lakes Assisted Living and Memory Care. That outbreak was described as “ongoing” in the state’s most recent semiweekly report on the coronavirus in congregate living settings.
“Our residents, staff and families need the support of our greater community now more than ever,” Amanda Bumin, executive director of Seven Lakes Assisted Living, said Tuesday in a statement to The Pilot. “As our caregivers handle this unprecedented situation, we ask that members of our Seven Lakes community rally together in support of their heroic efforts.”
Five employees and 31 residents of the facility have tested positive for COVID-19. Bumin is encouraging people in the county to send “letters with messages of hope and support to our residents and our teams.”
“We need your support to fight this battle,” she said.
Infections at Daycare
The Health Department on Thursday reported the county’s first co-called “cluster” of coronavirus cases after six infections were linked to Magic Years Childcare Center in Robbins.
Different from outbreaks, clusters occur mainly in schools and child care settings. NCDHHS defines a cluster as a “minimum of five laboratory-confirmed cases with illness onsets or initial positive results within a 14-day period and plausible epidemiologic linkage between cases.”
Four children and two employees at Magic Years Childcare Center tested positive, the local Health Department said. The daycare has been closed since July 17, when the first infections were identified.
A disproportionate number of COVID-19 cases have been confirmed in the Robbins area, according to ZIP code-level data from NCDHHS. More than 120 cases have been linked to the town’s primary postal code, which is home to only 6,704 people.
The county’s only other postal code with more cases primarily serves Pinehurst, the county’s largest municipality. A total of 152 infections and seven deaths have been linked to that ZIP code, which is home to about 15,990 people.