COVID-19 Updates

10/22/20: Today we received word that a second staff person from Heritage Center has tested positive for COVID 19. This new positive staff member last worked on 10/15, then developed symptoms.  The Dane County Department of Public Health has recommended weekly testing of Heritage Center and Magnolia Gardens residents and staff for the next three weeks.  We are awaiting our delivery of our testing supplies.  No residents have presented with symptoms and staff are wearing full personal protective equipment.  Staff and residents will continue to be monitored and screened for symptoms.

We were also informed today that a staff member from the nursing home tested positive as well. This staff member is a management nurse with no direct resident care duties.  We have alerted Dane County Public Health and they are stating that the risk of exposure is low.  They are recommending increased awareness, thorough cleaning of areas this staff person was in and continuing to follow our existing protocols.  No residents have presented with symptoms and staff and residents will continue to be monitored and screened for symptoms.

10/16/20:

Dear Residents and Family Members, 

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requires Skilled Nursing facilities to inform residents, their representatives and families of those residing in facilities by 5 p.m. the next calendar day following the occurrence of a single case of confirmed infection of COVID-19, or three or more residents or staff with new onset of respiratory symptoms occurring within 72 hours of each other. The assisted living reporting of new cases will be done as soon as it is practicable following notification. 

We are writing to inform you that Heritage Center has a confirmed case of COVID-19 infection. 

The safety of you or your loved one is our highest priority. Skaalen has a COVID-19 policy and procedure and it was implemented at the beginning of March 2020 and updated since then to ensure resident and staff safety. Skaalen's COVID-19 policy reflects guidance issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, and the Department of Health Services. In addition, Skaalen has purchased appropriate Personal Protective Equipment to keep residents and staff safe. 

We will continue to monitor all residents and staff for symptoms of COVID 19, test residents when necessary, and work with the Local, State, and Federal Governments during this time. 

Cumulative updates will be given following the subsequent occurrence of either: each time a confirmed infection of COVID-19 is identified, or whenever three or more residents or staff with new onset of respiratory symptoms occur within 72 hours of each other.

Please visit the Facebook Page for updates: www.facebook.com/skaalenretirement/ If you do not use Facebook, updates will be sent via email, please email: [email protected] and include your name, the resident's name, and a preferred email address if changes are made to what we have on file. Updates will also be posted on our website: www.skaalen.com. Please note that updates to our website are only made Monday through Friday during normal business hours. 

We want to thank you for your cooperation with us during this time. 

Sincerely, 

Heritage Center

10/12/20: Last week the staff member that tested positive with the rapid antigen test has tested negative with the follow-up PCR test. Great news!

10/08/20: We have started our second round of routine testing and have had an asymptomatic staff member test positive with the rapid test. They have been sent for a follow-up PCR test and we are awaiting the result.

10/02/20: We are still continuing to work on in-person visitation protocols and training and will have more to share soon. Thank you!

9/25/20: It came to our attention that the nursing home is listed on the Department of Health Services (DHS) website as having an active public health investigation for COVID-19.  We have since contacted the DHS, the Division of Quality Assurance and the Dane County Department of Public Health to find out why we were listed, when we do not have any positive staff or resident cases of COVID-19.  Dane County Public health told us we were listed on the website due to an input error within their computer system.  The Department of Health Services are in the process of correcting their website, but it will take a few days for them to remove the nursing home from the list.

The Federal and State Government has released new guidance and clarification on the reopening of visitation to nursing homes.  We are currently working on how we can accommodate this safely.  We will have more information and details to share next week.

9/21/20:While using the rapid detection testing system last week, we had four asymptomatic staff members test positive for COVID-19.  Today, we have received the last of their follow-up PCR test results and all are negative for COVID-19.  Great news!

9/16/20: We began using federal government supplied rapid detection antigen testing this week for routine testing of staff.  This type of test has a higher incidence of false-positive results than the PCR tests that we used previously.  We have had three asymptomatic nursing home staff members test positive with the rapid detection system.  An asymptomatic antigen-positive test requires a follow-up PCR test to confirm a true positive.  The staff were immediately removed from the building and sent home pending the outcome of their PCR confirmation test.   No residents have presented with symptoms and we are continuing to monitor them.  Dane County Public Health has been contacted and we are awaiting their recommendations.

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