With seven residents of the Jack Satter House testing positive for the coronavirus, the city of Revere is placing the independent living facility under quarantine. According to a statement from Mayor Brian Arrigo’s office, all residents must stay in their individual units in the apartment building and no non-essential visitors are allowed.
“It is the intention of this directive to enhance the efforts of the Jack Satter House and the policies already in place and give further authority for them to enforce these critical protocols,” the statement from the city says.
The Jack Satter House — an affordable-housing independent living community owned by Hebrew SeniorLife — reported its first two positive cases of the coronavirus on Tuesday. As of Thursday morning, seven residents have received positive tests. Of those, five are in the hospital and one has died, though it’s unclear if the cause of death was COVID-19.
Despite warnings to stay home and avoid public places, residents of the Jack Satter House have always been free to move around and leave the property as they please. But not anymore. And Lou Woolf, president and CEO of Hebrew SeniorLife, says that’s a good thing.
“With 33 cases confirmed so far … the city of Revere has become a bit of an epicenter in eastern Massachusetts,” he says. “It’s important that people realize how easily this can be contracted and how vigilant they should be.”
Older adults are particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus; at least 45% of all hospitalizations have been for people 65 and older, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports.
Several senior living facilities across Massachusetts have reported positive cases of the coronavirus, though it appears the Jack Satter House is the first to be placed under an official quarantine.
Woolf says that staff and other Hebrew SeniorLife employees will ensure everyone is cared for properly.
“We are helping them get take-out food, we are helping them go shopping. We are providing them with a tremendous amount of assistance. It’s quite a logistical effort with over 250 residents, but that’s what we will do,” he says.
For more than two weeks, the Jack Satter House has been screening and restricting most non-essential outside visitors, but now, under the new quarantine order, “only staff, emergency personnel, and some delivery services will be allowed inside the apartment building.”
The order also includes requirements about cleaning and personal protective equipment for staff, though Woolf says the facility has already put those measures in place.
This is a developing story. It will be updated.