Officials report 14 active, asymptomatic COVID-19 cases at Virginia Veterans Care Center in Roanoke


ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — Virginia health officials say there are 14 active coronavirus cases among symptom-free residents and staff members at a Roanoke long-term care facility for veterans.

According to the Virginia Department of Veterans Services (VDVS), 176 residents and 235 staff members at the Virginia Veterans Care Center (VVCC) in Roanoke on June 17 were tested through a Point Prevalence Survey (PPS) by the Virginia National Guard and the Virginia Department of Health (VDH).

On Thursday, June 25, officials say VDH notified the VDVS of the survey results, which revealed eight VVCC residents and six VVCC staff members — all of them asymptomatic — tested positive for COVID-19. In response to these results, the residents were moved to the VVCC COVID-19 isolation area while the staff members are self-isolating at home and were instructed to get in touch with their healthcare providers, the department says.

In addition, according to the VDVS’ news release on Saturday, June 27, VVCC has notified residents, family members, and staff of the positive COVID-19 cases.

In order to protect the health and safety of VVCC residents and staff, the VDVS says the following precautions are in place:

  • “VVCC is closed to all visitors. The only exception is for family members to visit a resident in an end-of-life stage, with prior coordination;
  • All persons entering the building are screened (temperature taken) and are asked about potential COVID-19 exposure. Persons with a fever or a positive response to the questionnaire are denied entry;
  • Residents are screened three times a day (temperature and vitals). Any resident with a temperature above 100.4 or showing other potential signs of COVID-19 exposure is immediately isolated.  A COVID-19 test is conducted upon the direction of the VVCC medical director;
  • Resident trips outside VVCC have been cancelled, except for visits to outside medical facilities for medically necessary appointments or emergency room (ER) visits;
  • Residents who have been admitted to a hospital must have a negative COVID-19 result that is less than 24 hours old, and must not have been tested or treated on any dedicated COVID-19 wing or isolation unit of the hospital prior to readmission to VVCC;
  • All staff who enter a resident room wear masks. If a resident’s condition calls for it, additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as gloves and gowns, is worn per VDH protocol;
  • Staff are following CDC guidelines related to handwashing, using alcohol-based hand sanitizers, covering coughs, and use of PPE; and
  • Staff who are sick have been directed to stay home and contact their medical care provider.”

Officials say VVCC continues to follow the latest guidelines from the CDC, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), VDH, and other officials amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

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