More than 90 people test positive for COVID-19 at Beattyville long term care facility

Published: Oct. 14, 2020 at 8:58 PM EDT
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BEATTYVILLE Ky. (WYMT) - The Kentucky River District Health Department reported on Wednesday that a long term care facility in Beattyville has multiple cases of COVID-19.

KRDHD and the state Department for Public Health are working closely with staff at the Lee County Care and Rehabilitation Center as multiple people tested positive for the virus.

Signature HealthCARE owns the facility and released a statement Thursday announcing how many cases the facility has.

As of 5 p.m. Thursday, 69 residents and 24 staff have tested positive for the virus. 62 of those residents are in-house while seven are in partnering hospitals.

The PR and Communications Manager for Signature HealthCARE, Ann Bowdan Wilder, released the statement below:

As we know, this virus changes daily and there are many asymptomatic persons, even in the state of Kentucky at large, who remain untested, virus carriers, that can affect us all. Furthermore, many of our residents must go out to hospitals for appointments or stays that last several days, and then return. In doing so, ambulance personnel are involved in the transport, hospital personnel encounter our residents; all of whom encounter persons in the general public every day. We realize, the potential for this virus to affect us all is high. Earlier this month, when one of our residents tested positive, Lee County Care & Rehabilitation Center followed Signature HealthCARE’s policy and immediately conducted facility-wide testing, with the current results being listed above.

That being said, Signature HealthCARE’s Lee County Care & Rehabilitation Center is prepared to appropriately care for our residents who test positive by using a variety of methods depending on outcomes, including opening two COVID-19 units on site in response to the need within our facility and within the community and Estill County. Signature HealthCARE has created almost 4-dozen COVID-19 units in its facilities nationwide with the acknowledgement of the CDC. Lee County Care & Rehab Center’s COVID unit will be isolated with barrier systems in place, separating itself from the rest of the facility, with separate supplies, food, its own entrance, and dedicated staff who work on the COVID units only. Personal protective equipment (PPE) will be provided and worn per CDC guidelines. Signature HealthCARE has consulted with its Infectious Disease physician and Infectious Disease nurse on board, who have provided guidance on the development of our COVID-19 units and who will be monitoring the implementation and operations at Lee County Care & Rehab. If at any time a physician determines a resident needs a higher level of care, they will be treated at one of our partnering hospitals.

Lee County Care & Rehabilitation Center wants to assure our residents, families, staff and community that we continue to take every precaution possible and follow the strict guidelines of the CDC and other controlling government agencies which include: a proactive facility-wide testing protocol, screening all stakeholders and residents daily for symptoms of the virus, testing weekly until there are no positive cases for 14 days, then testing staff every 14 days afterward, utilizing the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) including gloves and masks, currently restricting facility visitation in accordance with federal and state guidelines, and using alternate methods of communication for families, including Telehealth, iPads, iPhones, FaceTime, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams, as well as window visits and car parades and the mailing of cards and letters.

In this COVID-19 climate, we must continue to mandate, per government instruction, that our families continue in this restricted protocol. It is of the utmost importance for the protection of your loved one. We know remaining physically distant from loved ones has been difficult for all. There’s nothing like personal interaction. But we are thankful and appreciate that most of our families have understood our restrictions on visitation, and in fact, welcome them and have asked us to keep those protections in place.

Signature HealthCARE’s Lee County Care & Rehabilitation Center greatly appreciates the cooperation and understanding of our families and we continue to work with the local and state health departments, as well as other county and city officials, and we thank them.

Thank you for your time and attention.

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