ATLANTA — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said the most vulnerable population in the battle against COVID-19 continues to be the "aging population."
Although state leaders are doing everything they can to protect them from the virus, it's not an easy task.
"Right now, there are at least 80 long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, personal care homes, hospice, and similar community living facilities, with COVID-19 cases," Kemp said during a news conference Monday. "We’re working to verify new information on additional facilities."
"I charged General Carden with deploying teams to these facilities to sanitize and train staff on infection control measures to stop further spread," he said. "Utilizing 60 infection control teams, the Guard has cleaned 229 facilities."
One of the facilities the Guard has recently visited is the Windermere Health and Rehabilitation Center in Augusta, where WAGT reports that 70 residents and some employees have tested positive for the virus. State officials were asked about the location Monday during the news conference.
Georgia National Guard Adjutant General Thomas Carden said they had already been to the facility.
"When we see a report like that we go through and we index and look at the homes that we've already provided services to, and, in fact, when we saw the report on that particular facility we had been to it days before," said Georgia National Guard Adjutant General Thomas Carden.
"What we continue to do is go back and check with facilities as we see problems and challenges out there to see if there is another service we can provide to them," he explained. "Whether it be training or again directing infection control."
"We went back this Friday to take a look at that particular facility in south Georgia," Carden said. "When we visited the first time, they had 23 positive patients of 112 and they had a number of other persons under investigation with pending test. When we went back on Friday, they had only five additional residents test positive for COVID-19."
He said it's anecdotal evidence, but they can still go back and measure their effectiveness and update their tactics if needed.
Kemp went over some of the other measures the National Guard has been taking:
- the Guard has 19 medical support teams - with most comprised of physicians, nurses, and medics - working in hospitals to assist with COVID-19 triage and treatment
- 60 service members working hospital entry at 21 hospitals
- 27 service members deployed at state isolation sites.
- Service members stationed at 10 food distribution sites to assist with the delivery of goods
"The Georgia National Guard is working day and night to keep Georgia safe," Kemp said.
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