At least 30 patients and some staff at a Riverside skilled nursing facility tested positive for COVID-19, county health officials announced Sunday.
That number could climb as test results are still pending for other patients and employees at the Extended Care Hospital of Riverside, 8171 Magnolia Ave., Riverside County spokeswoman Brooke Federico said in a news release.
“In the meantime, the facility is closed to new patients, staff are not allowed to work at other facilities, sick patients are isolated, and all patients are being closely monitored,” she said.
Staff members at the facility are also using personal protective equipment, and those who test positive will be removed from work until cleared, according to Federico.
Trent Evans, Extended Care general counsel, said the facility was working closely with an infectious disease specialist to ensure it “maintains the highest standards in all areas of care while our attention is trained on infection protection.”
“We’re proud of our team’s dedication and professionalism during this global pandemic,” Evans said. “Extended Care has been proactively on the forefront of the efforts to stave off COVID-19, strictly following all government suggested and mandated protocols, including long-term infection control measures in anticipation of circumstances like these.”
Health officials said outbreaks at rehabilitation facilities and nursing homes present a high risk of serious illness due to the older age and close proximity of residents in those facilities, some of whom also have underlying medical conditions.
“We will be seeing more and more of these outbreaks in the community,” said Riverside County Health Officer Dr. Cameron Kaiser. “This is a vulnerable population and we’ll take all the steps necessary to protect them. But these steps can only work effectively if people stay home, stay apart and cover up their faces in public to reduce overall transmission.”
The 90-bed, short-term rehabilitation facility helps patients recover from serious injury or illness, according to its website.
“This is a very serious situation and shows why we must all take serious steps to change our behavior, because these steps are intended to protect our most vulnerable. They need and deserve our protection and we must all do our part,” said Second District County Supervisor Karen Spiegel. “I wish all of these patients a full recovery.”
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