Presbyterian Manor announces resident death

Chad Frey
The Kansan

It was a day Newton Presbyterian Manor had hoped would not come — though the retirement community in Newton was prepared for.

Nov. 25 Newton Presbyterian Manor announced resident who previously tested positive for COVID-19 died at the community.

“We are deeply saddened,” said Marc Kessinger. “I would encourage all to join us in praying for this resident’s family during this difficult time.”

The resident had been cared for in COVID-19 isolation by designated staff members according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) infection prevention protocols and physician’s orders.

The Manor also announced one essential health care worker, two contract direct care providers and four residents have tested positive for COVID-19 at Newton Presbyterian Manor.

On Nov. 22, and Nov. 23, Newton Presbyterian Manor conducted 249 COVID-19 tests -- two rounds of employee surveillance testing and one round of tests for all health care and assisted living residents. All assisted living residents were negative for the virus. In the health care center, three new residents tested positive and one resident who tested positive with a rapid point-of-care test earlier in the week was confirmed positive. Two contract direct care providers tested positive and one employee who tested positive with a rapid POC test after showing signs and symptoms also was confirmed.

On Nov. 17, the community received word it had received zero deficiencies for its infection control and prevention efforts on a focused infection control survey conducted on behalf of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. This is the community’s second zero deficiency infection control survey since August 1.

The campus will follow CDC and KDHE guidelines for when the residents may come out of isolation. Under the current guidelines, symptomatic residents may leave isolation when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of the resident’s fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and the resident’s symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Asymptomatic positive residents will quarantine for 14 days. Designated staff members are following doctor’s orders for treatment protocols and following CDC infection prevention protocols.

The first contract direct care provider last worked Nov. 24. The second contract direct care provider last worked Nov. 23. Both passed the pre-shift screening and wore personal protective equipment as required.

The campus follows CDC and KDHE guidelines in determining when employees and contractors may return to work. Under the current guidelines, the employee or contractor may return to work when at least 72 hours have passed since resolution of their fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and their symptoms have improved and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. If asymptomatic, the employee or contractor must quarantine for 14 days before returning to work. Upon their return to work, we will follow CDC recommendations related to work practices and restrictions.

The Harvey County Health Department has been notified and recommends continuing with our outbreak and surveillance testing. The senior living community will follow any additional guidance the health department provides.

These cases bring the total new cases since Nov. 18 to five employees, twp contract service providers and 11 residents. In-person visitation, group activities and communal dining remain on pause at the campus. Families are encouraged to schedule window and virtual visits with their loved ones during this time.

All employees and residents are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines and best practices as these are continually updated. The community regularly reinforces with all staff that an employee should not report to work if he or she is experiencing symptoms of a respiratory illness or not feeling well.