Newton Presbyterian Manor residents, employee test positive for COVID-19
Newton Presbyterian Manor announces that three residents and a direct-care employee have tested positive for COVID-19.
“Resident and employee safety remains our highest priority in the face of the virus,” said Marc Kessinger, Newton Presbyterian Manor executive director.
We tested 48 residents on Friday, October 30. Two memory care residents and one health care resident tested positive for COVID-19.
The Harvey County Health Department has been notified and residents in the health care center will be retested later this week.
The employee was administered a rapid point-of-care test on-site after reporting feeling unwell. The positive point-of-care test will be verified by a standard COVID-19 test. We follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance and confirm any positive rapid test within 48 hours with a follow-up standard COVID-19 test.
We have done contact tracing and determined the positive individuals did not have any direct contact with other residents or employees. The CDC and KDHE defines exposure as being within 6 feet of another person while he or she is symptomatic for 10 minutes or longer.
We will also continue our surveillance testing of all employees. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has mandated surveillance testing of our staff. Surveillance testing requires all employees, agency employees, volunteers, hospice, lab and therapy providers at our campus to be tested on a frequency determined by our county’s COVID-19 testing positivity rate. Based on our county positivity rate for COVID-19 tests, our campus is testing staff twice a week.
The COVID positive residents will recover in isolation and be cared for by designated staff. We will follow CDC and KDHE guidelines for when the residents may come out of isolation. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic residents may leave isolation when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of the resident’s fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the resident’s symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Asymptomatic positive residents will quarantine for 14 days. Designated staff members are following doctor’s orders for treatment protocols and following CDC infection prevention protocols.
We follow CDC and KDHE guidelines in determining when an employee may return to work. Under the current guidelines, the employee may return to work when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of the employee’s fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the employee’s symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. If asymptomatic, the employee must quarantine for 14 days before returning to work. Upon the employee’s return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.
All employees are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines and best practices as these are continually updated. The community regularly reinforces with all staff that an employee should not report to work if he or she is experiencing symptoms of a respiratory illness or not feeling well.
For more information about Newton Presbyterian Manor’s response, go to PMMA’s (Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America’s) website, presbyterianmanors.org/media-room.