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Salina Presbyterian Manor reports weekly COVID-19 test results

Four cases of COVID-19 were detected at Salina Presbyterian Manor this week.

One health care resident tested positive via rapid point-of-care testing Tuesday, and two additional residents tested positive with rapid POC tests Friday. The residents were placed in COVID-19 isolation to be cared for by designated team members following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocols and physician’s orders.

“Our efforts to keep COVID-19 out of our building continue,” said Jeanne Gerstenkorn, PMMA’s vice president for health and wellness and infection preventionist. “Saline County’s positivity rate remains above 10-percent, which means the transmission rate is still high. This virus is highly contagious, and it is vitally important that everyone in the surrounding communities continue to do their part to reduce the spread.”

After two rounds of employee surveillance testing Monday, January 18, and Wednesday, January 20, one essential health care worker tested positive for COVID-19. The employee is an essential health care worker who last worked January 21. The employee passed pre-shift screening and wore personal protective equipment as required.

The community also tested 66 residents on Monday, January 18, and all test results were negative. Residents will test again on Monday, January 25. Employee surveillance testing also will continue Monday and a second round will be conducted later in the week.

The residents will recover in isolation until he or she meets CDC and KDHE guidelines for leaving 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 at least 10 days.

The COVID positive employee will quarantine at home and will not be allowed to work until they meet CDC and KDHE guidelines for when they may return to work. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic employees 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. Asymptomatic positive employees or contractors will quarantine for at least 10 days. Upon the employee’s return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.

We are in contact with the Saline County Health Department and will follow their recommendations.

Our focus remains on ensuring the well-being of our residents and employees. We continue to follow all guidance related to patient care, employee safety, and efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19, as provided by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  We have notified the Saline County Health Department and KDHE and we will follow their recommendations.  We are working closely with Jeanne Gerstenkorn, PMMA’s infection preventionist and vice president for health and wellness, in implementing our Emergent Infectious Disease (EID) Outbreak Management Plan.  

We encourage all staff members and residents to follow CDC guidelines and best practices as these are continually updated.  We have been screening employees as they enter the community building for a shift and before employees have any direct contact with residents.  We educate all staff to stay at home if they are 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 Salina Presbyterian Manor’s response, go to PMMA’s (Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America’s) website, presbyterianmanors.org/media-room.

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