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Lacey woman demands answers after her mother dies from COVID-19 in nursing home

As Joanie Stein puts her mother to rest, she’s also grappling with questions over why staff at the Regency Olympia Rehab and Nursing Center in Lacey didn’t do more.

LACEY, Wash. — A woman is demanding answers from a Lacey nursing home after her mother died of COVID-19. 

An outbreak at the Regency Olympia Rehab and Nursing Center in Lacey has infected 16 residents and killed one: 81-year-old Carol Kingsley. 

"I feel guilty for putting her there," said Kingsley's daughter, Joanie Stein. "My mom was a wonderful woman. She cared for people. She was a good nurse."

Kingsley passed away from COVID-19 on August 16, after testing positive for the virus just eleven days earlier. Stein says she has questions about the level of care her mother received in the days leading up to her death.

Stein told KING 5 her mother wasn't taken to the hospital, despite her COVID-19 diagnosis. 

“What they said on the 13th when I requested that she be taken to the hospital, is that her [forms] said DNR, “Do Not Resuscitate, Comfort Care Only,” Stein said. “And I said, no you’re mistaken.”

Now Stein wonders just how different things would be if the nursing home acted sooner and stepped in. 

"It may or may not have, but she wasn't given the chance," Stein said. 

Stein now worries that other residents are in the same danger as her mother.

“It stresses me daily, thinking about the other residents,” Stein said. “They’re not being protected from getting COVID since the staff members aren’t using proper PPE when dealing with infected patients, and because my mom wasn’t given proper care in my opinion.”

The Thurston County Health Department says they are aware of the outbreak at Regency Olympia, and nursing homes with active COVID cases are directed to outfit staff with full protective equipment and implement a quarantine as best they can for 14 days while testing residents and staff every three to seven days.

KING 5 reached out to Regency Olympia to ask about the nursing home's COVID-19 protocols, and how they deal with residents who contract COVID-19, but no one was available to comment. 

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