MILWAUKEE -- FOX6 News on Wednesday, April 8 spoke with a man concerned about his mother, a resident of a long-term care facility in Milwaukee, amid the coronavirus pandemic. Candace Weber's son said he wants two things -- information about his mother, a resident of BRIA of Trinity Village near 76th Street and Dean Road, and to know that she's protected from COVID-19.
"Okay, she's surviving," said Mark Weber as he spoke with his mother via video call Wednesday. "There she is in her mask."
Weber said he fears the worst for his 69-year-old mother.
"I just, I needed to see her, so I stood outside her window and videotaped it, just so I have something, in case," he said.
He wondered Wednesday whether she was even receiving care to protect her from the virus.
"She is lying paralyzed in a bed, and this facility has not taken standard precautions, basic human decency, and just basic common sense to protect her," said Mark Weber.
Weber said he received a voicemail Sunday, April 5 informing him that: "We have received confirmation a resident has been diagnosed with COVID-19. We encourage you to call the facility for updates on the status of your loved one."
He said it took 16 hours for him to get a call back, and said officials at the facility refused to switch his mother's room or test her when they had reason to believe her roommate had the virus.
"They are in a skeleton crew," said Weber. "My mom sat in incontinence for four hours today because they're understaffed and scared to come into the room. This should not be happening."
As of Wednesday, Candace Weber had begun showing symptoms herself.
"I am trying to advocate for her," said Weber. "It's falling on deaf ears there."
Daniel Weiss, CEO of BRIA Health Services, said this in a statement to FOX6:
"With the rise of coronavirus cases nationwide, BRIA of Trinity Village has closely monitored our residents and staff and taken precautionary measures recommended by the Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to keep our patients and staff safe.
Upon a confirmed positive case of COVID-19, the nursing home follows CDC guidelines and in contact with the local health department. The individuals who test positive will be isolated from the other residents and placed under watchful care of our staff. In the event a staff member exhibits signs or symptoms or tests positive they will be sent home until they are able to return to work based on CDC and public health guidelines.
The nursing home has implemented all Department of Public Health and CDC guidelines, including cancellation of communal activities and dining, visitor restrictions, and employee and patient screening protocols."
Candace and Mark Weber
Weber said they still would not test his mother, and without that, she won't be moving.
"I just want to help her," said Weber. "That's all I want to do."
Weber said officials at the facility called once about one case of COVID-19, but he fears there are more, and wants consistent updates. He said without knowing what's happening inside, he can't help his mother make decisions that are best for her.