News & Information > News Releases

May 12, 2020

CONTACT: Melanie Mowry Etters
Communication Director

Statement on Sunland Center

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The top priority of the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) is the health and safety of its customers. On May 1, the Department of Health visited the Sunland Center in Marianna and tested residents and employees on a voluntary basis for COVID-19 with no one testing positive. Recently five Sunland residents who live in the same house have tested positive and are at the Jackson County Hospital until they have two negative tests. DOH is testing all the residents of this home and testing is required for all employees. DOH is also testing any other staff who may have come in contact with these individuals. Additionally, DOH will be conducting mandatory testing on Thursday for all Sunland residents and employees. The results of this additional testing may take 10 days to process.

APD is taking every possible step to prevent the spread of this virus and to protect our residents. APD is requiring all employees and residents to wear face masks as an additional precaution. APD began screening visitors at the beginning of this outbreak, and currently do not allow any visitors at the facilities. Required vendors, regulatory officials, and first responders must follow screening procedures to gain access. Everyone who wishes to enter the facility, including employees, must have their temperature taken prior to entering.

APD supports people with developmental disabilities to live, learn, and work in their communities. The agency annually serves more than 55,000 Floridians with disabilities. For more information about the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, visit or call toll-free 1‑866‑APD‑CARES (1‑866‑273‑2273).