Multiple residents die from COVID-19 at Wayne County nursing home

Dozens more test positive for coronavirus

According to officials at Rivergate Terrace Nursing Home in Riverview, there have been seven confirmed coronavirus related deaths at the facility, but insiders claim the number is much higher.

RIVERVIEW, Mich. – Rivergate Terrace Nursing Home in Riverview is a massive rehabilitation home that has become a COVID-19 hot spot.

Insiders told Local 4 it all started with a letter mailed out March 26 from the facility’s executive director. The letter said on March 23, a resident testing positive for coronavirus and was rushed to a hospital. That resident reportedly never recovered and died.

Just over a week ago, the same facility had alpacas brought in to delight residents and raise morale.

Officials with the nursing home have confirmed seven residents have died and many more testing positive for COVID-19.

Multiple insiders at the facility told Local 4 the number of deaths is far greater than seven and that residents, many with compromised immune systems, are dying quickly before they can be tested or treated.

Statement from Rivergate Terrace

Here is the full statement from Sujata Chaddha, interim executive director at Riverview Terrace, explaining the nursing home has had 21 residents and 15 associates test positive for COVID-19 since March 25. Chaddha’s statement says seven residents died from the virus at a hospital while others are still recovering at the hospital:

"Twenty-one Rivergate Terrace residents have tested positive for COVID-19 as of April 9, along with 15 associates.

HIPAA privacy guidelines prevent the sharing of personal patient information, but we are able to share the following details:

  • 22 Rivergate Terrace residents were tested for COVID-19 after being transferred to local hospitals. 21 of those tests came back positive. One came back negative.
  • We received notification of the first positive test on March 25.
  • As we received notification of each positive test, any resident who was known to have contact with the resident who tested positive was immediately isolated.
  • Three of the 21 residents who tested positive have returned to our facility and are under the isolated care of our facility associates. We are following the guidance of our medical director and local hospitals and will continue to care for these residents in-house unless a resident’s condition progresses to a level of care that requires a transfer back to the hospital.
  • Seven of the residents who remained at the hospital after testing positive have passed away. The other residents are continuing their recovery in the hospital.
  • One resident test is pending.
  • 17 associates have been tested for COVID-19. 15 of those tests came back positive; the other two tests were negative. The associates who tested positive are recovering at home and will not return to work until they have met specific guidelines from the state health department and CDC about returning to work after COVID-19.

We have been and will continue to follow all CMS, CDC and state and local health department guidelines concerning COVID-19. Our associates are being diligent on practicing proper hand hygiene and the use of personal protective equipment, which is recurring education they normally receive, beginning with their orientation at our facility. Every associate is also screened when they arrive for work and when they leave, including checking temperature, to ensure no additional sickness is brought into our building. Anyone with a fever over 100 is sent home and asked to contact their personal physician.

These guidelines also place restrictions on the entrance of visitors, family members and vendors. Signage with information on COVID-19 and details about these restrictions is posted on our doors. Our entrance is also equipped with an infection prevention station that includes personal protection supplies.

Our heartfelt condolences go out to the friends and loved ones of the patients who have passed away. The safety and well-being of our residents will remain our highest priority as we continue to work in partnership with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and the Wayne County Health Department and follow the guidance they provide."

Anyone who believes they might have coronavirus should follow the CDC guidelines. has a list of resources available to those concerned about COVID-19.

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About the Authors:

Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.