Samaritan Keep Home employee tests positive for COVID-19

WATERTOWN, NY — Samaritan Health released the following statement:

On Saturday, June 6, Samaritan Health received notice one staff member at Samaritan Keep Home tested positive for COVID-19.

The staff member has been tested regularly since May 20 and has been negative until now. The staff member all along has been asymptomatic and were unaware they had the virus. The staff member will be quarantined for 14 days and retested before they begin to work again.

This staff member’s interaction with residents and staff is being evaluated now.  The risk to residents is minimal because of staff face mask use and heightened proper hand washing. All residents remain on precautions and are being closely monitored for symptoms.

So far, we have performed over 3300 COVID-19 tests on all long-term care staff members – only four have been positive so far. In addition we have tested all residents at Samaritan Keep Home who were willing to be tested and all were negative.  We’re confident the additional precautions staff have been taking, including wearing masks and regular, deep sanitization of the facility, have greatly helped limit exposure.

Unfortunately, as we’ve seen across the state and country, the unpredictable nature of this virus and the potential for those infected not to show symptoms can cause some cases to go undetected.

The health and safety of our residents and staff remains our top priority. All staff will continue to be tested once or twice per week to check for additional asymptomatic cases. As we have from the beginning, any employee showing symptoms will be tested immediately and will not able to work.

We have notified resident families.