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After one facility sees 16 deaths in a single month, Rockbridge County nursing homes begin vaccinations

More vaccinations coming to area nursing homes

Rockbridge County has experienced a rising death tally in nursing homes.
Rockbridge County has experienced a rising death tally in nursing homes.

ROCKBRIDGE COUNTY, Va. – The new year typically brings with it bright optimism for better days.

As 2021 began, some Rockbridge County and Lexington nursing homes and long-term care facilities dealt with dark days as residents continued to die from the coronavirus.

As of Wednesday, Kendal at Lexington reports some staff tests have come back positive from the January 11 testing.

The number of Borden Health Center residents with a positive result for COVID, who have not yet recovered, is now five. Twenty-five residents, who previously tested positive for COVID-19, have now recovered. No assisted living residents have tested positive.

[Where are Virginia’s coronavirus cases? The health department’s interactive map]

Within the last month, 16 Borden Center residents have died, according to a spokeswoman.

“The Kendal at Lexington family is devastated by these losses, and we have extended our deepest sympathies to their families and loved ones during this unimaginably difficult time,” the company said in an online statement. “As some residents struggle with their fight against this virus, we ask that you continue to keep these individuals and their families in your hearts and prayers.”

“Congregate care and long-term care was impacted tragically by this pandemic,” said Senior Vice President of Trio Healthcare LLC Alan Cosby, whose company manages Shenandoah Health and Rehab in Buena Vista.

He shared with 10 News that no patients have tested positive at their facility as of Wednesday.

Fifty-nine have tested positive since the pandemic began. 46 have recovered and 14 people have died, with the last death occurring Jan. 6.

The light at the end of the tunnel is vaccines.

The Manor of Natural Bridge, another area facility, receives its first vaccine doses from CVS on Thursday morning. They have about 48 residents to vaccinate.

Kendal at Lexington issued its first doses last week.

More than 300 eligible residents and staff were vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine on Jan. 11 and 12 by CVS/Omnicare through an on-site clinic. The second dose will be administered Feb. 1-2.

Residents and staff at Shenandoah Health and Rehab will get their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine from Walgreens on Monday.

“They’ll vaccinate staff members. They’ll vaccinate residents. They’ll also vaccinate any healthcare provider we work with. We’ve offered them the vaccine, too,” stated Cosby.

We reached out to other area facilities who either declined to comment or have not returned our calls.

About the Author:

McKinley Strother joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2020. He anchors 10 News at 6 and 11 on Saturdays and Sundays and you'll also catch him reporting during the week.