Fort Bend County Provides COVID-19 Update of State-Run Richmond State Supported Living Center

Fort Bend County, TX — Fort Bend County Judge KP George and Dr. Jacqueline Minter, Fort Bend County’s Health and Human Services Director and Local Health Authority today released an update on the epidemiological investigation at the Richmond State Supported Living Center (RSSLC).

“We were saddened when we learned in the news media of the Richmond State Supported Living Center residents who were hospitalized and passed away from this terrible invisible enemy. Every single loss of life is heartbreaking for their families and loved ones,” said Judge KP George. “Dr. Jacquelyn Minter and her team continue to support the State agencies — at their request — to help ensure positive results for the residents and staff of this state facility.”

Fort Bend County started to assist in an epidemiological investigation at RSSLC on March 28 at the State’s request. The Department of State Health Services (DSHS), which has the authority to investigate cases of communicable diseases at state owned and operated facilities, requested the County’s assistance. Also, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), which operates the state assisted living facilities, including the RSSLC, asked for participation. Furthermore, the State released new guidance on May 13 on what actions should be done for a variety of nursing facilities.

While DSHS and HHSC have regulatory and operational authority for all issues at the Richmond State School Living Center, Fort Bend County is assisted in protecting the residents and staff at the RSSLC by:

  1. Authorizing spending $84,000 of County funds to pay for FDA-approved COVID-19 tests. The tests were given to staff and residents in order to get a speedy and clear snapshot of the spread of the virus on the campus.
  2. Implementing prevention and control measures, which include a no-visitation policy; taking staff temperature and symptom checking before and after shifts; referring patients needing a higher level of care to the appropriate medical facility; cohorting (grouping) patients with COVID-19 and cohorting the staff who care for them; isolating positive residents away from the other residents and exclusion of high-risk, exposed staff from the facility for 14 days.
  3. Contracting with a commercial laboratory to support the State’s effort to test all the residents and staff on the campus.
  4. Providing office space at the Rosenberg Annex for State Agency staff to work from when needed.
  5. Make available infection control practitioners and epidemiologists to provide supportive expert and technical advice to the State agencies as needed to fight COVID-19 at the RSSLC.

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