Maria Krier Littletown Massachusetts healthcare worker at Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley dies of COVID-19 a month after exposing crises at nursing home.
At what expense healthcare workers on the front line…?
A Massachusetts healthcare worker has died from coronavirus a month after publicly speaking out over management’s handling of the outbreak at the nursing home she worked at.
Maria Krier, 59, complained last month about ‘conditions’ at the Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley, before quitting in early April.
As of Friday 10 residents had died and 67 were infected at the nursing home which Krier called out for failing to rein in the deadly bug outbreak.
Masslive reports Krier getting sick two weeks ago and dying in hospital on Friday.
It is thought the woman contracted COVID-19 at the facility where she worked at prior to her quitting.
‘We kept waiting for the ball to drop.’
In previous public missives, Krier claimed bosses at the Littletown facility kept the deadly bug’s outbreak quiet after a resident had tested positive for COVID-19, and put others at risk.
‘They discovered this particular woman had it. They never told anybody,’ Krier told WCVB. ‘We kept waiting for the ball to drop. Like, when are you going to tell us we’re exposed to it?’
Krier blew the whistle, claiming there was a lack of care for patients exhibiting symptoms. She said there was no initiative to protect workers and patients.
Littleton officials said they ‘were stonewalled’ by officials at Life Care Centers’ after they tried to trace contact and identify people who had been in close contact with an infected resident.
Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley confirmed Krier had passed away and said she worked for there a short time.
‘We are deeply saddened by the passing of one our associates during these challenging times the country is experiencing,’ regional vice president, Kate O’Connor, said in a statement. ‘Our heartfelt condolences go out to her family and friends.
‘We are fighting a virus that is still largely unknown, and our nurses and staff continue to provide the best care given the guidance we have received from both federal and local health agencies.’
The National Guard came in to test the rest of the patients but no staff were tested at the time.
Now the facility wants all staff tested too.
‘To date, testing has been limited in order to prioritize the most vulnerable residents of the state,’ Life Care explained in a statement. ‘Last week, working with the Massachusetts National Guard, we completed full testing of all residents within the facility.’
Life Care confirmed a staggering 75 employees out of 204 are now off sick. Fourteen members of staff have tested positive for coronavirus and another 17 are absent on doctor’s orders.
In the telephone interview before she took a turn for the worse, Krier said: ‘I love doing what I do but I can’t work for incompetent people any more.’
Now Krier’s coworkers are haunted by what happened to her.
Many employees plan to resign because they were not tested.
As of Sunday morning, Massachusetts had over 22,860 coronavirus cases and 686 deaths. Of note, 44% of the reported deaths were in long-term care facilities.