ATLANTA - A downtown Atlanta nursing home that stands in the shadow of the Martin Luther King Center is on record with the second-highest number of residents sickened by COVID-19 in Georgia.
"That's incredible and is inexcusable," said Atlanta City Councilman Michael Bond.
Bond was stunned when we told him how many residents at Legacy Transitional Care and Rehabilitation have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.
"This facility is in the middle of downtown Atlanta right across from the King Center which is the number one tourist attraction in the city, over three million visitors a year come to that center," said Bond.
The I-Team has been telling you how Gov. Brian Kemp has utilized the Georgia National Guard to help deep clean elderly care facilities.
On April 19, the Georgia National Guard 201st Regional Support Group decontaminated and disinfected Legacy Transitional Care on Auburn Avenue, across the street from the King Center.
According to the governor's spokesperson, Kemp sent the Guard in after managers twice declined offers to have their facility cleaned.
"I mean that's terrible, particularly, because they resisted, its compounded because they resisted help initially. Imagine if the Fulton County Health Department or the National Guard or the governor hadn't taken action," said Bond.
While the National Guard disinfected the building, the local health department tested residents and staffers for the COVID-19 virus.
At that time Legacy Transitional had 8 residents diagnosed with COVID-19 as well as three more staffers.
Now, the Department of Community Health reports that number has skyrocketed to 107 residents and 19 staffers testing positive for COVID-19. Three residents have died
That means - according to community health data - 76 percent of all residents in the home are sick with COVID-19.
"It's an absolute tragedy and it undercuts everything the city could or possibly do to prevent the spread of the disease," said Bond.
Bond says his own aunt, Nancy Finney, recently died of COVID-19 virus while in a different nursing home. And he worries about the impact this disease has had on the poor, the elderly, and African Americans.
"The worst part of this is this disease can be mitigated. If people don't take it seriously people literally die," said Bond.