With the number of COVID cases in Minnehaha County increasing our exposure at Dow Rummel also goes up. This past week we had four positive cases (two staff and two independent living residents). Exposure from these four cases has affected some residents in each of the buildings on our campus. Today our county’s positivity rate is 13% with 1300 active cases (the highest number of cases since early January).
With the number of cases and exposure risk increasing, we ask everyone to be more diligent in their infection controls practices. Wear a mask when not at home (including when out and about within Dow Rummel). Good hand hygiene is always important, as well as practicing physical distancing. It’s time to step up our infection control practices for a while.
We are still allowing two visitors at a time in the licensed areas (Allen Wing, Village East, and Village South) per our current guidelines. As a reminder, schedule visits through our social services team. We ask all residents and family members in these areas to work together to stay within the guidelines. We do not want to turn away visitors or refine our procedures with stricter visitation guidelines. All visitors must wear masks at all times.
Visitors coming to see Independent Living residents should come to the designated entrance for that building. Visitors should keep their visits within the resident’s apartment rather than in common areas as much as possible right now. All visitors must wear masks when in common areas. In the resident’s apartment masks may be removed at the discretion of the resident.
Several people have been asking about booster vaccines. Our pharmacy provider stated that until the booster vaccines are FDA EUA (emergency use authorized), they won’t be allowed to give the booster. When they are FDA EUA approved, we will work with Avera to do vaccine clinics on-site as soon as they can. If someone wants one now, they should work directly with their doctor to make arrangements to get a booster through them.
The signs and symptoms of COVID-19 are: fever, cough, new shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, congestion/runny nose, chills/repeated shaking with chills, muscle or body aches, new loss of taste or smell, headache, sore throat, diarrhea, and vomiting/nausea. Many of these signs and symptoms can be confused with the common cold, allergies, or flu symptoms. We are encouraging all residents to let us know if they have ANY of these signs and symptoms. We can test for COVID right away and be proactive in minimizing exposure for your neighbors, friends, and staff.