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Aberdeen Heights residents, employees test positive for COVID-19

At the end of COVID-19 testing for the week of November 23, Aberdeen Heights reports that 5 health care residents and 6 employees tested positive last week. The new cases bring the 7-day total for the community to 11, with 6 employees and 6 residents.

“The health and safety of our residents and employees continues to be our highest priority,” said Rick Cumberland, executive director.

The community conducted two rounds of employee surveillance testing, which identified the six new employee cases. Five of the employees are essential health care workers and one is a non-direct resident care employee. All passed pre-shift employee screenings and wore personal protective equipment as required.

In addition, the community tested health care center residents due to previous exposures. Five new resident cases were identified. All five residents have been placed in COVID-19 isolation to be cared for by designated staff members.

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.

Employees or 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 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.

We have contacted the St. Louis County Health Department and will follow any direction they provide. Resident and employee testing will continue this week. The first round of testing was completed November 30. Those results are pending.

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 employees twice per week.

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.

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