HOMER, Alaska (AP) — A resident at an Alaska assisted living home where two employees have tested positive for COVID-19 has also tested positive, an official said.
Homer Senior Citizens Inc. Executive Director Keren Kelley confirmed the positive tests at the Friendship Terrace home, The Homer News reported.
A positive test of the first worker, who underwent testing after complaining about not feeling well, resulted in testing of workers and residents who were close contacts, Kelley said in an email Thursday. That round of testing resulted in an additional positive test among the employees, Kelley said.
Testing of remaining staff and residents revealed the positive case of a resident, the newspaper reported. Kelley said by email that remaining residents have tested negative.
Kelley said the resident who tested positive was moved to an “Isolation Zone.”
“All residents have been asked to remain in their apartments,” she said. “We have increased our sanitizing efforts to minimize the risk of the spread.”
Staff will wear protective gear when interacting with residents, Kelley said, and residents will be asked to wear masks when receiving help, if they can tolerate doing so.
Homer Senior Citizens operates the assisted living home as part of the Homer Senior Citizens Center complex.
The Homer Senior Citizens Center has adhered to state health mandates issued in March and no visitors have been allowed into the facility except qualified medical workers, Kelley said.
“We’ve tested so many employees. They all come back negative. This is the first time,” Kelley said. “It might be because the state opened up. You’ve been around town. You don’t see anybody wearing masks.”
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.
This story has been updated to correct the spelling of Kelley.