Data on COVID-19 infections in Kent’s long-term care facilities were made public Tuesday under a new directive from Gov. Larry Hogan that reversed a non-disclosure order that was less than a week old.
As of yesterday, Kent has documented 77 cases of COVID-19 infections resulting in seven deaths, said Kent Health Officer William Webb at Tuesday’s Commissioners meeting.
Webb said 80 percent of the infections in Kent have come from the county’s long-term care facilities at Autumn Lake Healthcare, The Resorts at Chester River Manor and Heron Point.
An outbreak at Autumn Lake that started on April 14 resulted in 51 infections among residents and 10 infections among employees. Four deaths have occurred among residents. There are currently six pending test results at the facility.
The facility currently houses 72 residents.
Autumn Lake has accounted for four of the county’s seven deaths.
The Resorts at Chester River Manor has recorded two cases of the virus with one death. Webb said there were 90 test results pending there.
At Heron Point, two residents and one employee tested positive for the virus and there is one test result pending. The outbreak there started on March 29.
There are five employees associated with an outbreak at an agricultural facility in the north of the county that processes eggs. That outbreak there began on April 22, but Webb did not release the name of the facility by the time this story ran.
Webb’s briefing to the Kent Commissioners comes a day after Gov. Larry Hogan directed the Maryland Department of Health to release data on all congregate living facilities in the state.
“Keeping Marylanders informed and being transparent with the facts continues to be at the heart of our response to COVID-19,” Hogan said in a press release late Monday.
Webb sent out a press release minutes later saying the local health department would comply.
“The state will be pivoting from a position of non-disclosure to one of transparency,” Webb wrote. “The Kent County Health Department will be following the direction of statewide leadership.”
The directive was issued less than a week after state health officials ordered the data withheld to protect patient privacy. Overwhelming public health concerns prompted the Hogan administration to reverse course and make the data public.