LewisGale in Salem says ‘handful’ of employees tested postive for COVID-19 at the end of last week


SALEM, Va. (WFXR) — A spokesperson for LewisGale hospital in Salem tells WFXR that a “handful” of employees have tested positive for COVID-19 after coming in contact with a patient who was originally admitted for a different illness and later tested positive for the virus.

All employees that may have potentially contracted the virus are being tested and monitored twice daily.

LewisGale is not releasing the specific number of employees at this time to respect the privacy of its health care workers.

We had a handful of employees who tested positive for COVID-19 at the end of this week. In our investigation, we were able to trace their exposure to one of two patients who were initially admitted for other illnesses but later tested positive for COVID-19 after developing respiratory symptoms. All colleagues and medical staff members who were potentially exposed to these individuals have been notified and are being tested for COVID-19. These colleagues will be monitored twice daily by employee health and will wear masks per our universal masking protocol. Should they test positive or become symptomatic, they immediately self-isolate at home and will continue to receive 100% of their base salary during the CDC recommended quarantine period.

As we continue to learn more about COVID-19 and its transmission, we have implemented additional measures. A few of these include universal masking with all colleagues, medical staff, and patients, including those who are not symptomatic for COVID-19; temperature checks upon entry into our facility; a no-visitor policy except in extenuating circumstances; and other protocols and guidance from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention.

Nancy May, Hospital Spokesperson

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