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Two new cases of COVID-19 detected at Newton Presbyterian Manor

After two weeks with no new cases of COVID-19, Newton Presbyterian Manor identified two new cases of the virus during testing this week.

“We remain committed to protecting the health and safety of our residents and staff,” said Jeanne Gerstenkorn, PMMA’s vice president for health and wellness and infection preventionist.

An essential health care worker tested positive after exhibiting signs and symptoms of COVID-19 on Monday, January 18. The employee last worked Thursday, January 14, passed pre-shift screening and wore personal protective equipment as required.

A second essential health care worker tested positive for COVID-19 when the results from Monday’s employee surveillance tests were received. The employee last worked January 14, and has not been on the schedule because a close contact had tested positive for the virus. The employee passed pre-shift screening and wore personal protective equipment as required.

All results in the second round of employee surveillance testing were negative January 20.

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 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. The next round of employee surveillance tests will be administered Monday, January 25.

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. As the vaccine becomes more widely available, 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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