Wichita Presbyterian Manor employee tests COVID-19 positive
An essential health care worker at Wichita Presbyterian Manor tested positive this week for COVID-19. The employee is in isolation and quarantined at home.
“Our top priority is the safety of our residents and staff members,” said Jeanne Gerstenkorn, PMMA’s infection preventionist and vice president for health and wellness, “The employee last worked June 21 and has not been in the building since then.”
The employee last worked June 21 and passed the employee screening. The employee was next scheduled to work June 29. The employee called in sick and was advised to get a COVID-19 test. They were tested July 1 and the results were received July 9.
The medical community and CDC advise that the incubation period for COVID-19 varies from host-to-host, but that most individuals who get infected and develop symptoms will do so within at least 14 days. Because the employee has not been on campus for 18 days, there is not a risk that the employee transmitted COVID-19 on our campus.
The Sedgwick County Health Department has been notified of the positive test. Families have been called to alert them, and all state and county mandatory required reporting agencies have been notified. The community will follow any additional guidance from the Sedgwick County Health Department and the state.
“The screening protocols and education we’ve done with our employees worked,” Gerstenkorn said. “The employee did not feel well, did not come to work and called in sick. The supervisor advised the employee to get tested for COVID-19 before returning to work.”
Wichita Presbyterian Manor will continue screening employees as they enter the community building at the beginning of their shift and before the employees have any direct contact with residents. These screening measures include taking staff temperatures and asking a set of questions about their health status, COVID-19 exposure risks and reviewing a list of COVID-19 symptoms. Employees who have a fever or report feeling unwell are not allowed to work and are asked to get tested for COVID-19 if they have symptoms of the disease. These measures have been in place since March 13 and continue to be updated as CDC guidance changes.
We encourage all staff members to follow CDC guidelines and best practices as these are continually updated. We have been screening employees as they enter the community building for a shift and before employees have any direct contact with residents. We educate all staff to stay at home if they are experiencing symptoms of a respiratory illness or not feeling well.
The employee is in quarantine and recuperating at home. Before returning to work, the employee must have negative results from an FDA Emergency Use Authorized COVID-19 molecular assay for detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA from at least 2 consecutive respiratory specimens collected at least 24 hours apart (total of two negative specimens). Upon the employee’s return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.
For more information about Wichita Presbyterian Manor’s response, go to PMMA’s (Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America’s) website, presbyterianmanors.org/media-room.