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Newton Presbyterian Manor shares another round of COVID-19 test results

Newton Presbyterian Manor identified one new case of COVID-19 in employee surveillance testing this week.

“We continue to be vigilant in our efforts to protect the health and safety of our residents and staff,” said Jeanne Gerstenkorn, PMMA’s vice president for health and wellness and infection preventionist. “Our residents and employees will have their first opportunity to receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine next week, and Harvey County’s positivity rate continues to head in the right direction.”

Employee surveillance testing January 4 and January 6 identified one new case of COVID-19. The non-direct resident care employee last worked January 5, passed pre-shift screening and wore personal protective equipment as required.

The campus follows CDC and KDHE guidelines in determining when employees may return to work.  Under the current guidelines, the employee may return to work when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of their fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and their symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. If asymptomatic, the employee or contractor must quarantine for at least 10 days before returning to work. Upon their return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.

The community also tested 15 assisted living residents due to a previously reported possible exposure. No residents tested positive, and no further testing will be required at this time.

The Harvey County Health Department has been notified and recommends continuing with surveillance testing. The senior living community will follow any additional guidance the health department provides. Employees will be tested once next week in compliance with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) mandated testing requirements since the Harvey County positivity rate has been below 10 percent for two consecutive weeks.

All employees and residents 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.

As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes available, it should play an instrumental role in eventually moving toward resuming our normal operations. Every person who receives the vaccine will strengthen the protection for all residents, staff and the community at-large. PMMA strongly encourages our families, employees and residents to carefully consider obtaining a vaccine for themselves as well as their loved ones.

For more information about Newton Presbyterian Manor’s response, go to PMMA’s (Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America’s) website,

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