(BIVN) – Ten cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed at Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo. Administrators say seven residents and three staff members have tested positive for the virus.
Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home is the only post-acute care and rehabilitation service provider specifically designed to serve the special needs of Veterans in the State of Hawaiʻi.
Here is the full letter, posted online on Tuesday:
Dear Residents, Family Members, and Friends:
Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home has been following the guidance and directives of the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and the County and State Health Departments regarding COVID-19 and infection control and prevention. Despite our best efforts to prevent COVID-19 from being introduced into our facility, we can confirm that seven residents and three staff members have tested positive for the virus. Of those residents, two are being cared for at Hilo Medical Center and five are being cared for at the facility in an isolation setting. Based upon our contact tracing, we believe the virus entered the facility through a staff member who was exposed in the community. The initial staff member tested positive on August 22 followed by another on August 23 and the third on August 25. The seven resident results were received today, August 25.
All residents and staff were tested for COVID-19 on August 23-24. We have received the results from the August 23 testing and those from August 24 are pending. We will continue to update you as we receive additional results.
The positive staff members are self-isolating at home and will not return to work until medically cleared to do so. All staff members are screened before entering the facility pursuant to CDC guidelines and are sent home if they report any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 or other illness. Any residents experiencing signs or symptoms are isolated and tested. All staff are wearing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) pursuant to CDC guidelines.
We are working diligently to limit the spread of the virus to other residents of the facility and are communicating this news to our residents, staff, and their loved ones.
We are strictly limiting access to the building and carefully screening all people entering our facility in accordance with CDC and CMS guidelines. At this time, only essential visitors and vendors are being allowed access to the building as determined on a case-by-case basis. We are also following the CDC and CMS guidance that applies once a nursing facility has a confirmed COVID-19 positive case, as well as working closely with our physician partners and the State Health Department.
Our top priority remains the safety of staff, residents, and visitors. This includes making sure all of our employees and staff throughout the facility understand how to protect themselves and the residents in their care.
We are dedicated to providing quality care for our residents. We will continue to fight to keep our residents and staff safe.
Please reach out directly to the Facility Administrator with any questions or concerns that you have.
Your Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home Facility Administration
by Big Island Video News
HILO, Hawaiʻi - An outbreak of COVID-19 at the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home was confirmed in a special message from the administration on Tuesday.