TUPPER LAKE – Mercy Living Center is currently reporting a coronavirus outbreak with 17 residents and staff testing positive for COVID-19. No one has been hospitalized, Adirondack Health spokesperson Matt Scollin said. Some have symptoms of COVID-19.
A vaccinated staff member tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week, Scollin said, triggering a “Hatching state” at the retirement home managed by Adirondack Health.
If a person tests positive in a nursing home, all of their residents and staff are typically tested for COVID-19.
The first set of test results returned Wednesday evening revealed that 14 residents and three staff were carriers of the virus.
“That’s 13 more than we’ve ever had”, said Scollin.
He said a few of those who have tested positive show symptoms of COVID-19. The others are asymptomatic. No one was hospitalized, he said.
Of the residents who tested positive, Scollin said 12 are vaccinated and two are not. All three staff are vaccinated, he said. Adirondack Health CEO Aaron Kramer said on Wednesday that 95% of Mercy’s total population was fully vaccinated.
Scollin said eligible residents received their Pfizer booster shots on October 21. Adirondack Health was planning a Moderna booster clinic on November 17, but said it could be postponed because it might not be good to give a symptomatic person a booster shot while they still test positive.
Mercy currently has 51 residents and around 100 staff, Scollin said.
Scollin said residents and staff have been in this situation before, with positive cases triggering epidemic statuses – meaning a temporary lockdown without authorized visitors – but this time there are more cases than ever before. . He said the nursing home was working closely with a state epidemiologist.
While in an outbreak, Scollin said visits were limited. Mercy makes a few exceptions for compassionate end-of-life care, he said. Family and friends can still call residents or talk virtually. They can also schedule window visits. Only medically necessary appointments continue at this time.
“Residents are encouraged to stay in their room”, said Scollin. “Those who cannot stay in their room and can tolerate a face mask will be advised to wear it when they are outside their room. “
Scollin said residents dined in their rooms. Activities take place in individual rooms or in socially remote spaces, but he said there were no gatherings allowed. The living room is also small.
Scollin said positive residents are treated on a case-by-case basis. This is where they live, he said, but for everyone’s safety he said staff keep them away from others when they are not in their rooms.
Staff who test positive for the virus are asked to be off work for at least 10 days.
“Staff continue to universally use face masks, goggles and screens throughout the facility”, said Scollin.
The next rounds of tests will take place on November 15 and 23.