A worker at the facility called 911 after Lorraine Bayless, 87, passed out in the dining room while eating and was barely breathing, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday.
The dispatcher pleaded with a nurse to perform CPR on the resident until emergency medical personnel could arrive at the independent living facility, Glenwood Gardens.
"Is there anybody that's willing to help this lady and not let her die?" the dispatcher is heard on tape asking the nurse.
"Um, not at this time," the nurse replied.
The ambulance arrived a few minutes later. Bayless died Tuesday at an area hospital.
Jeffrey Toomer, executive director of Glenwood Gardens, extended his sympathy to the woman's family, but said the nurse followed the facility's policies.
"[O]ur practice is to immediately call emergency medical personnel for assistance and wait with the individual needing attention until such personnel arrives," he said in a statement. "That is the protocol we followed."