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A COVID-19 Hot Spot In Prairie Village Now Accounts For 57 Known Cases And 9 Deaths

Brighton Gardens Senior Living Center in Prairie Village, Kansas.
Jodi Fortino
KCUR 89.3
Brighton Gardens Senior Living Center in Prairie Village, Kansas.

The Brighton Gardens senior living facility is barring visitors and providing staff with protective equipment. The county plans to retest residents and staff in a week to find out if those efforts are working.

Brighton Gardens, a Prairie Village nursing home, is still coping with a serious outbreak of COVID-19, Johnson County Health and Environment Director Sanmi Areola told the county commission Thursday.

The facility had recorded 57 positive cases and nine deaths as of Thursday. That’s an increase since the outbreak was discussed a week ago.

“I don’t like what’s going on at Brighton Gardens,” Areola told the commission as he gave an update on virus outbreaks at long-term care facilities in the county. He said his staff is in contact with Brighton Gardens regularly to discuss mitigation strategies. Representatives of the Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services also visited the facility on Wednesday.

The county plans to retest residents and staff again in a week to see if the containment efforts are working.

Brighton Gardens is owned by Sunrise Senior Living in McLean, Virginia, which operates 325 facilities throughout the United States.

Denise Falco, regional vice president of operations for Sunrise, said in a statement that, “in close collaboration” with the health department, everyone at the facility has been tested.

“Given the complex nature of this virus, any resident who exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, regardless of a positive test result, will be treated with the same infection management protocol of precautions and isolation within the community,” Falco said.

Among the measures she said Sunrise has taken:

  • Providing staff with personal protective equipment
  • Barring nonessential visitors
  • Implementing screening to identify potential symptoms
  • Restricting new resident move-in
  • Ending communal dining

Sunrise operates two other Johnson County senior living facilities: Sunrise of Leawood and Sunrise of Lenexa. Neither has had any COVID-19 cases over the last 28 days.

Along with Brighton Gardens, Forest Creek Memory Care in Overland Park, Stratford Commons in Overland Park and Homestead of Olathe North account for 118 of the 132 ongoing outbreaks at long-term care facilities in Johnson County.

However, it has been 23 days since there were any positive cases at Forest Creek, 13 days at Stratford Commons and 25 days at Homestead of Olathe.

Forest Creek is owned Seasons Living in Lake Oswego, Oregon. Stratford Commons is owned by Tutera Senior Living & Health Care in Kansas City, which operates 70 long-term care centers in 10 states, including Kansas and Missouri. Homestead of Olathe is owned by Midwest Health Inc. in Topeka, which operates assisted living facilities in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

So far, outbreaks at other long-term care facilities in Johnson County appear to have run their course, Areola said. Lakeview Village, Village Shalom, and the Sunrise facilities in Leawood and Lenexa have gone 28 days, or two incubation periods, since the onset of coronavirus cases there. He said Homestead of Olathe North and Forest Creek Memory Care are also days away from reaching that threshold.

Lynn Horsley is a freelance writer in Kansas City. Follow her on Twitter @LynnHorsley.
Dan Margolies has been a reporter for the Kansas City Business Journal, The Kansas City Star, and KCUR Public Radio. He retired as a reporter in December 2022 after a 37-year journalism career.
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