Aberdeen Heights caregivers, residents test positive for COVID-19
Through another round of outbreak testing at Aberdeen Heights, the community has identified nine new cases of COVID-19.
“We continue our efforts to protect the health and safety of our residents and employees,” said Rick Cumberland, executive director.
On Monday, November 16, the campus tested 159 employees and 17 residents as part of ongoing outbreak testing. In results received Wednesday and Thursday, five employees, one contract service provider and three skilled nursing residents were identified as positive for COVID-19. One additional skilled nursing resident tested positive on Monday with a point of care test after exhibiting signs and symptoms of the virus.
We have contacted the St. Louis County Health Department and will follow any direction they provide. Employees were tested again Wednesday, November 18, as part of our ongoing Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)-mandated surveillance testing. Those results are pending. We have conducted contact tracing and will retest all residents on Friday, November 20.
Testing will continue next week for both residents and employees.
CMS requires surveillance testing of 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 employees twice per week.
The COVID positive residents will recover in isolation and be cared for by designated staff. We will follow CDC guidelines for when the residents may come out of isolation. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic residents may leave isolation when at least 24 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.
The employees and contractors who tested positive will remain in isolation until cleared to return to work by the St. Louis County Health Department. We will follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for when an employee or contractor may return to work. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic employees or contractors may return to work when at least 24 hours have passed since resolution of their fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the their symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Asymptomatic positive employees or contractors will quarantine for 14 days. Upon their return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.
Aberdeen Heights continues to screen all employees as they enter the community building for a shift and before they have any direct contact with residents. In addition, staff members are wearing masks per CDC recommendations.
For more information about Aberdeen Heights’ response, go to PMMA’s (Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America’s) website, presbyterianmanors.org/media-room.