A wedding in Washington State that was attended by more than 300 guests, including staff from three nursing homes (McKay Healthcare & Rehab Center in Soap Lake, Lake Ridge Center in Moses Lake, and Columbia Crest Center in Moses Lake) has been identified as a superspreader event, leading to at least seven COVID-19-related nursing home resident deaths. Four additional nursing home resident deaths at two of the facilities are pending death certificate reviews.
Within 10 days of the November 7, 2020 wedding, almost 40 people who attended the wedding tested positive for COVID-19 in nearby Grant County. Grant County Health District stated in a statement dated December 3, 2020, “Seven (7) deaths were associated with Long Term Care Facilities (LTC) outbreaks reported on November 20th and all these residents had underlying conditions putting them at higher risk for severe complications due to a COVID-19 infection … Our investigations have determined that there were long term care staff who tested positive for COVID-19 who attended the large wedding in Ritzville, WA reported on November 16th. Because staff in these facilities care for entire units, direct contact with associated patients is not known … Your choice to gather with those outside your household could lead to additional cases of COVID-19 and even death. Please protect those you love, by staying home … Our hearts are with the families and friends of these residents. On behalf of our staff, Grant County Health Officer, and Board of Health, we are so sorry for your loss.”
Grant County Health District also reported three COVID-19 deaths not associated with a long term care facility: a female resident of Moses Lake in her 70s who had underlying conditions putting her at higher risk for severe complications due to a COVID-19 infection; a male resident of Moses Lake in his 80s who did not have underlying conditions putting him at higher risk for severe complications due to a COVID-19 infection; and, a female in her 90s who had underlying conditions putting her at higher risk for severe complications due to a COVID-19 infection. These deaths bring the total Grant County confirmed COVID-19 related deaths to 54.
The newlywed whose wedding has been deemed a COVID-19 superspreader event has stated, “Every single day we’re getting a call. Oh, here’s another person. Here’s another person. Here’s another person. And it starts to take a toll on you.” She stated that they provided face masks and hand sanitizer to all of their guests but “were shocked to see that hardly anyone was using them, however, including people who came in close contact with others on the dance floor. That’s what was may be the superspreader is the dance floor. Everybody’s in each other’s face and there’s no masks.”
If you or a loved one may have a nursing home COVID-19 claim in Washington or elsewhere in the United States, you should promptly contact a Washington COVID-19 nursing home lawyer, or a COVID-19 nursing home lawyer in your state, who may investigate your COVID-19 nursing home claim for you and represent you and/or your loved one in a COVID-19 nursing home case, if appropriate.
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