Family wants answers after elderly mother tests positive for COVID-19

Posted at 5:17 PM, Apr 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-21 07:26:56-04

BALTIMORE — A Baltimore family is seeking answers from an adult care center after their mother was discharged and later tested positive for the coronavirus.

The family tells WMAR-2 News the facility tested their mother twice, both results came back negative. Another test at a different facility yielded different results.

"We had a pleasant experience," said Kim Owens. "My mother liked the staff there. That's why we sent her back."

Kim and her sister Joyce had nothing but positive things to say about FutureCare Cold Spring. They used the facility for their mother's follow-up care after she was injured last year. So when she fell and needed more rehab, they brought her back.

"She went in on the 6th of January," said Owens. "She was there during the coronavirus outbreak."

Owens told WMAR-2 News when news spread that there were confirmed cases at the facility she looked at having her moved back home.

"We started asking about her being discharged," said Owens.

The sisters said they wanted to make sure their mother wasn't a health risk. She said the facility's staff tested her mother twice and was told both her results for the virus came back negative. But when they went to pick their mother up last Friday they knew something was wrong.

"Her health had declined greatly between the last time we saw her on video," said Owens.

Her sister Joyce said their mother wasn't breathing properly.

"When she got in the car she was wheezing. She couldn't catch her breath," she said.

They immediately took their 90-year-old mother to Union Memorial where she was tested for the virus. Less than 24 hours later the hospital confirmed to them their mother had the virus.

"Had we known she was positive," said Kim. "We wouldn't have taken her out of FutureCare. I feel they were dishonest and by releasing her, pretty much knowing she had it, it not only jeopardized her health and safety but also that of myself and family."

As a result, Kim and her sister Joyce, are on quarantine.

"I take my temperature every four hours," said Joyce.

"We're taking care of ourselves but we're also concerned about our mother," said Kim. "We want to know if FutureCare made a mistake."

WMAR-2 News reached out to FutureCare for comment.

In a statement a spokesperson said:

"While we are not able to comment on individual resident matters, FutureCare ColdSpring does not process any COVID-19 testing. All tests are processed through the health department or third party hospital systems in coordination with, and subject to the guidance of, the Maryland Department of Health. Our highest priority continues to be the safety and wellbeing of our residents and staff."

Right now Kim and Joyce's mother remains under the care of staff at Union Memorial.

"Right now we're just praying," said Joyce.

They want her to make a full recovery but know it will be difficult because of her underlying health conditions.