Bryan County Health and Rehabilitation Center in Richmond Hill has reported 14 residents and one staff member who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Of the 14 residents who tested positive, four were taken to the hospital, according to Operations Director Terry Cook.
He said one person has since returned to the center, and most of those who tested positive for COVID-19 were asymptomatic.
“The testing is the only reason we found out they had COVID,” said Cook. “Getting the tests has been the most difficult piece of all this to deal with. At first we couldn’t get testing done unless they were showing symptoms and then it took a long time to get the results back.”
Cook said the center, which has about 85 residents, was able to get additional tests from a private company, and that he plans on continuing to test residents and staff members.
“I need to be able to test everyone so we can separate those who test positive from those that don’t,” he said. “And we need to test often because some who tested negative this week may test positive next week. Without the testing, I can’t properly manage and care for our patients.”
Cook said the center has been following Centers for Disease Control and Georgia Department of Community Health guidelines. He said he hired NCG from Augusta to come into the facility.
“We have contracted with a company that does the disinfection for operating rooms and they will be here on Monday to treat the home with a germicide and they do some testing to verify that it has been destroyed.”
Cook also Georgia Army National Guard have come to the center on a weekly basis to keep the building clean, and taken other measures to protect center residents and staff.
He said the facility has restricted a lot of activities, brought in a respiratory therapist to help patients in need of breathing treatments, as well as making sure the clients are staying in their rooms unless there is a necessary reason to go out.
In addition, Cook said staff members are all equipped with N095 masks. In addition, patients must wear masks when around staff members.
Cook said the rehabilitation center opened in 1996 and the main priority remains the same today.
“Our only goal is to help and protect clients,” he said. “We love our patients; they and our staff are our priority.”
The Georgia Department of Community Health website lists a report on the number of cases throughout the state in licensed nursing homes, assisted living facilities and personal care of homes of 25 bed or more. The report is updated daily at 2 p.m.
The report for April 27, listed 2,782 positive cases across the state with 432 deaths There are 1,411 positive cases among staff members at various facilities across Georgia.
The Bryan County Health and Rehabilitation Center have not reported any deaths at their facility.