Alamance County Health Department has identified a COVID-19 outbreak at three long-term care facilities in the county, Mebane Ridge Assisted Living in Mebane, Brookdale Senior Living and Alamance House Assisted Living, both in Burlington. NC DHHS defines an outbreak as two laboratory-confirmed cases in a period of 28 days within a congregate living or long-term care facility. Regular testing is required through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in order to provide surveillance as protective factor for both staff and residents.
At Mebane Ridge Assisted Living, three (3) cases have been identified among three (3) staff members.
Jill McMinn, Executive Director at Mebane Ridge, stated, “We’re grateful for the support we’ve received from the Alamance County Health Department COVID team. Their guidance has been invaluable. No senior living community wants to have to deal with an outbreak like this, but we’re thankful it’s been limited to a small number of our team members, all of whom seem to be tolerating the virus well. We’re confident that we have the right protocols, processes, and protective equipment to keep those who live and work at Mebane Ridge safe and well.”
This is the second COVID-19 outbreak identified at Brookdale Senior Living. Currently, seven (7) cases have been confirmed among five (5) residents and two (2) staff.
Heather Hunter, Communications Director for Brookdale Assisted Living, stated, “Brookdale’s top priority is the health and safety of our residents, patients, and associates. We have informed residents, their family members, and associates of Brookdale Burlington Assisted Living of this matter. We are diligently monitoring our residents and associates for signs and symptoms, and we continue to work directly with local health officials to help ensure our residents and associates have the appropriate and necessary medical support. We will continue to follow the guidance of the health departments throughout this situation. Additionally, we have been closely following our established policies and procedures for contagious illnesses and are also closely following the guidance and protocols recommended by the local and state health departments and the CDC.”
At Alamance House, five (5) cases have been identified among four (4) residents and one (1) staff member.
Meladie Capers-Adams, Executive Director at Alamance House, stated, “Our community has been resilient amidst adversity and we continue to work tirelessly to recover from this virus. If you are reading this, my message to you is: Get vaccinated. Take your Covid-19 vaccination and help us end this pandemic in its tracks. Residents and staff of long-term care facilities have shouldered an incredible burden this year and we want to get back to normal; welcoming families back into our communities, hugging our loved ones, and living a life without fear of infection. We value our friends, family, and partners in Burlington and appreciate the prayers and support at this time – we can’t wait to see you again!”
Alamance County Health Department identified its first confirmed case of COVID-19 on March 20. Since then, a total of 14,818 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the community. Of those confirmed cases, 13,537 have been released from isolation and 1068 remain active and in isolation. Included in those active cases, 42 individuals are receiving care at a hospital. Sadly, there have been 213 COVID-19 related deaths. COVID-related deaths include only patients who tested positive for the novel coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, and who died without fully recovering from the disease.
Although the percent of positive COVID-19 cases has decreased in the county, we still need to be mindful that COVID-19 is still prevalent. It is important to take steps to reduce your risks of contracting COVID-19, specifically wearing a face covering, maintaining physical distance and avoiding crowds, and washing your hands and cleaning commonly used surfaces regularly. Also, when your time comes to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, please do so. These steps are imperative to control the spread of COVID-19. The health of you, your loved ones, and the community are what matters.