One coronavirus case has been reported at Starr Regional Medical Center’s Etowah campus, but all other tests have come back negative.
According to SRMC Marketing & Communications Coordinator Brandi Armstrong, “we can confirm that a member of our team at Starr Regional Health and Rehabilitation (SRHR) in Etowah tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). This individual is now at home in self-isolation.”
Armstrong noted that everyone else there was immediately tested for the virus and it had not spread to others.
“Upon receiving notification of the positive test result, we worked in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) and swiftly tested all of our staff members and residents,” Armstrong said. “We received all final test results today (Thursday) and can confirm that all 71 residents and 101 staff members have tested negative for COVID-19.”
Armstrong said that Starr is doing everything it can to limit the risk of spread of the coronavirus.
“Starr Regional Medical Center is committed to protecting the health and safety of everyone who walks through our doors,” she said. “We are continuing to work closely with TDH and following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to ensure the safety of our patients and staff members.”
She said that communication is open to family members of those at their facility as well.
“We strictly follow all appropriate guidance for the notification of patients and their families and have established regular updates with our residents’ family representatives, in accordance with guidelines recently released by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS),” she said.
She explained that many precautions at the facility began some time ago, as well.
“In addition to our standard infection prevention protocols, we proactively implemented additional safety precautions over the last two months, including a strict zero-visitor protocol, limited entry points to the facility, masking for all staff members and required screenings for fever and other symptoms of respiratory illness for everyone entering the facility,” she noted. “We began routinely monitoring all residents for symptoms of COVID-19 in March and require testing for every new resident prior to admission. Our residents are like family to us and protecting their safety and wellbeing while maintaining open lines of communication with their loved ones is our top priority.”