Weekly testing to continue for several weeks
by Dennis Rahm with information and photo demonstrating safety protocol released by Amanda Ballou.
Confirmed COVID-19 positive cases at Heritage Heights in Chelan have increased from 19 to 25. The updated results of weekly facility wide testing were received on Christmas Eve. Below is the most recent update from Heritage Heights CEO Amanda Ballou.
Heritage Heights received the results of its second weekly round of facility-wide testing on Christmas Eve. The tests showed four new positive cases and 19 negative results. In addition to the new cases, there were two PCR results that came in positive after initial rapid response tests had been negative. These test results brought total confirmed positive COVID-19 cases to 25. There are two individuals in rehab.
Weekly testing is only done for negative cases. Positive results are not re-tested. Testing is required to continue for four weeks after the last positive result is obtained in order to demonstrate that the outbreak has cleared.
According to Chelan Douglas Health District representatives, it has taken long term care facilities a minimum of six weeks and as long as several months to become clear of an outbreak.
As a matter of perspective, in Chelan County there were 11 long term care facilities with outbreaks at the beginning of December. There are now nine.
Heritage Heights continues to follow the DOH and CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus. The observance of quarantine, personal protective equipment, and testing are our main defenses.
Heritage Heights is participating in a vaccination partnership program with Walgreens that should provide the first round of vaccines for staff and residents sometime in January. Ballou said a total of three on-site vaccination clinics will conducted in the next few months.