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How Long Beach’s Largest Supporting Residential Campus Keeps COVID Cases Low • Long Beach Post News – Long Beach, California

Long Beach, California 2021-01-13 12:19:00 –

Coronavirus is especially devastating in densely populated and working-class areas of West, Central and North Long Beach.

Still, Cabrillo’s Century Village, a supportive housing community in the middle of West Long Beach with families, veterans, formerly homeless individuals, and the elderly, has significantly reduced the large number of cases found in multi-regional housing complexes. I avoided it.

There are 2,133 people living in the Century Village of Cabrillo, but only 32 have tested positive for the coronavirus since March. Despite being located in one of the most hit zip codes by COVID-19 in Long Beach, the infection rate is only 1.5%.

Meanwhile, across Long Beach, as of Tuesday, 41,079 positive cases were found among 462,000 residents. This corresponds to an overall infection rate of 8.9% of the city’s population.

So how did the village largely avoid the genocide of other residential environments? Secretary-General Steve Colman said leadership was very aggressive when the news of COVID-19 first spread, especially because many of its residents are old and have asthma.

Nearly half of the people living in the former Navy estate, Villages, are veterans.

Like other apartments, Villages residents live in multiple apartments and short-term emergency shelters, some of which share shared spaces such as bathrooms and laundry rooms.

However, similar shared living areas, such as nursing homes, are epicenters of the virus both locally and nationally, with approximately 40% of all COVID-related deaths associated with long-term care facilities. As of Tuesday, 226 deaths were associated with long-term care facilities in Long Beach, according to city data.

Take the pandemic seriously

On March 2, Colman joined a leadership team of 11 nonprofits and government agencies led by 11 on-site partners about a new urban health protocol that a 27-acre community must follow to protect itself from a pandemic. I sent the first distant email. 420 people on Long Beach.

Colman and his team send everyone who can work in remote areas home, attack residents with different types of messages to follow the protocol of social distance, and client and staff with PPE and disinfectants. Prepared quickly.

Colman believes that the relatively low number of cases of coronavirus is due to his aggressiveness, strict adherence to local health protocols, and luck.

All citizens were required to follow the rules of social distance in the city, but what made Century Village successful was the cooperation of staff and residents who took the crisis seriously.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020, one of the exits of the Cabrillo Century Village on Long Beach. Photo: Thomas R. Cordova.

One of the biggest benefits of Century Village was that a month’s worth of disinfectant was kept on campus thanks to the management team. At that time, the entire store was running out of cleaning products following a large number of panic purchases.

Colman, who manages real estate development programming on campus, said the team poured disinfectants into bottles overnight, created their own hand sanitizers, and distributed them to homes, offices, and other densely populated areas throughout the campus. Said.

They used an electrostatic sprayer (a disinfection tool similar to a house bug bombing) to clean the same space and install a plexiglass barrier for offices that are still open directly.

Meanwhile, Century Village purchased 1,500 reusable cloth masks and distributed them to residents throughout the campus.

On March 20, while the public waited in long lines for household items and food, Colman took staff to a grocery store, PPE, food, for many high-risk residents in need. I searched for toilet paper.

“Button-up” approach

In fear of past infectious diseases from SARS and HIV / AIDS, Colman said everyone on his team was ready for COVID.

“We need to be role models,” he said, so they said, “I pushed a lot about our protocol.”

The key was to learn from the outbreaks that were seen nationwide in the past, educate, and communicate with the public. At Century Village, it’s frequent and consistent.

“At that time, every day was like a new day … it was like Groundhog Day in the movie,” he said.

Colman met with staff daily on his programming and weekly with the leadership team to discuss changing game plans. The executives who oversee the on-campus institutions and organizations that make up this leadership team are called Cabrilo Collaborative Villages.

Dora Jacildo, executive director of Child Lane, one of the on-site organizations that also chairs the collaboration, facilitated these weekly monthly meetings following COVID. The child lane was closed for a month in mid-March to train staff and move furniture, but due to the nature of working with children in the field, disinfectants were already available. It was.

Cabrillo Century Village in Long Beach Tuesday, December 15, 2020. Photo: Thomas R. Cordova.

The team searched for quarantines that could be infected or exposed and monitored them until they recovered or were cleared.

Mr. Colman also regularly talked with the city’s health department, saying he had conducted more than 1,000 tests since the start of the pandemic and sent about 20 mobile test stations to campus.

City spokesman Jennifer Rice Espstein said Long Beach doesn’t track site-by-site mobile tests, but says it does an average of about 100 mobile tests per day across the city. Stated. The city began testing in the village in May “as needed,” for example, whether residents were potentially exposed. She said the city began testing on campus twice a month on the first and third Thursdays of November 5.

Coleman added that Long Beach Health Director Kelly Coropy has met Century Village six times since April.

“I was very afraid at the time. There were many unknowns and many speculations,” Colman said of scrambling to protect the masses. “We were able to work in an orderly and well-thought-out way.”

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