Johnson Memorial Health Services (JMHS) is pleased to announce that COVID-19 testing completed on Monday, December 21 and Monday, December 28 in the Care Center show 100% negative results. This means for the past two weeks our Mayo testing has resulted with zero new positive cases. This is wonderful news as the beginning of December the care center had an outbreak in which a total of 28 residents ended up testing positive for COVID-19. In addition, seven out of 10 resident deaths were attributed to the COVID virus.
LTC staff, residents and tenants are scheduled to receive the first of two doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine on January 14, 2021. In Minnesota, LTC vaccines are distributed and administered through different pharmacies. Walgreens is the appointed pharmacy for JMHS and has scheduled three visits to ensure everyone that wants the vaccine is vaccinated.
Long-term care facility (LTCF) residents are among the first tier to be vaccinated. The communal nature of LTCFs and the population served (generally older adults often with underlying medical conditions) puts facility residents at increased risk of infection and severe illness from COVID-19. Making sure LTCF residents can receive COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible will help save the lives of those who are most at risk of dying from COVID-19.
JMHS’s highest priority is to provide the best possible care while protecting the health and wellness of residents, tenants, patients, and staff. Their providers and staff are working collaboratively with the Minnesota Department of Health and following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. They continue efforts to mitigate transmission which include:
- Employee screening and testing prior to every shift
- All JMHS staff wear N95/surgical masks at all times, in every shift
- All residents are screened 2-3x daily
- High touch areas are cleaned frequently by Environmental Services
- Carefully limiting communal activities, social distancing, and taking other infection control precautions
Lac qui Parle County’s CMS Positivity rate is currently 9.6% which requires weekly COVID-19 testing of Long-Term Care (LTC) staff, residents, and tenants. The high positivity rate and recent outbreak dictate limiting visitors to pre-approved compassionate care visits. While JMHS is hopeful they are trending in the right direction, they are being extremely cautious regarding re-opening to visitors.
“We know that everyone is anxious to see their loved ones in person,” said Stacey Lee, CEO. “However, we ask for your patience as we continue to re-evaluate opening up for visitors as none of us want to go through another outbreak.”
JMHS hopes that they won’t see another spike in community COVID-19 cases after Christmas and New Year’s like they experienced after the Thanksgiving holiday. In addition to zero new cases in the care center, they would also like to see the county CMS positivity rate fall below 5%. Until then, friends and family are encouraged to set up virtual visits by emailing the activities department at [email protected].
For more information, please contact Amanda Redepenning, Care Center DON at 320-769-2350, or Stacey Lee, CEO/Administrator at 320-312-2101.