COVID-19 outbreak reported in Grant County Long-Term Care facility
Over 30 cases reported among staff and residents
Last updated 11/10/2020 at 6:45pm
SOAP LAKE, WA – Grant County is experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak in one long-term care facility (LTC), McKay Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Soap Lake, WA, with over 30 cases reported in residents and staff. At this point in time all COVID-19 residents have been moved out of the facility. Unfortunately, one resident has recently died due to COVID-19 complications, which was reported in yesterday's press release. McKay had remained COVID-19 free since the on-set of the pandemic.
Further precautions are being taken to reduce the spread of the virus to additional residents or staff. GCHD requested a WA Dept of Health medical surge strike team who specializes in COVID-19 to conduct a site visit and make additional recommendations. The team has been on site once and will be returning to assist McKay as they prepare for the residents to return.
All LTCs in Grant County have been preparing for the possibility of COVID-19 cases within their facilities for months. Each LTC has a COVID-19 response and isolation plan and have worked closely with GCHD, WA Dept of Health and WA Dept. of Social and Health Services. Grant County is seeing a steady increase of the virus in the general community. Research has shown that nursing homes are often impacted when located in areas of general community spread. Grant County will continue to work with local nursing homes impacted by this complex virus.
Grant County LTC facilities are actively:
• Monitoring residents and staff for COVID-19 symptoms.
• Testing all residents and staff weekly.
• Communicating with Grant County Health District, and often daily when positive residents or staff are identified through the frequent testing.
• Implementing frequent cleaning, disinfection, and hygiene policies.
• Enforcing visitor restrictions and assisting families to connect with their loved ones in other ways.
• Utilizing readmitting or admitting new resident policies to assure their return or move to the facility is safe for the remaining staff and residents.
• Utilizing Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). PPE is one of the most important prevention tools. Staff are always required to be masked. Masking requirements for residents are utilized as much as possible, when masking is challenging for the resident, then other projections such as room isolation are utilized. COVID rooms or wings are also implemented when more than one case is within the facility.
As the holiday season approaches and our schools open their doors to students, Grant County residents must remain diligent with washing their hands, masking, social distancing and staying home when sick. Our long-term care residents are depending on all of us to keep them safe. All LTC facilities are committed to staff training on disease transmission and wearing PPE appropriately at all times, frequent handwashing, and whenever possible adherence to social distancing between staff as well as staff to residents.
Long-term care facilities serve our most vulnerable populations whose age and health conditions put them at a higher risk for severe complications due to COVID-19 and death. We all need to be vigilant about protecting these community members, especially those who work with or come into contact daily with those who are the most vulnerable. For the health of your family, neighbors, and friends, it is now more critical than before to wear a mask when in public. Limit the size of your gatherings, each personal decision we make to socialize outside of our households may impact our most vulnerable residents. Please mask up when out in public or when visiting with people outside of your household.
For detailed information on Grant County COVID-19 related statistics, visit http://www.granthealth.org.