Zero positive cases of COVID-19 reported at Maple View Memory Care mass testing event

Maple View Memory Care nurses administered 68 tests to staff and residents on Wednesday, April 22, after a part-time staff member reported having tested positive for the virus. Maple View staff learned Friday that all 68 tests returned negative results.

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A mass testing event at Maple View Memory Care in Grand Forks on Wednesday, April 22, resulted in zero positive cases of COVID-19, the center's director said Friday.

"We're really happy to find out we had no positives. All our staff and residents came back negative," Maple View Director Jessica Bailey said. "We've let all of our families know so we're going to keep everyone in communication, but that's the news that we have right now."

Maple View Memory Care nurses administered 68 tests to staff and residents Wednesday. The North Dakota Department of Health sent the tests to Maple View after a part-time staff member tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday, April 20. The staff member had not worked since April 11 and notified Maple View on Sunday, April 19, that a household member had tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend and that person also had undergone testing. That employee and one other who was possibly exposed to the virus remain on leave.

Maple View Memory Care is one of two long-term care facilities in Grand Forks with a positive case of COVID-19 as of Friday afternoon, the other facility being Valley Senior Living on Columbia, according to the NDDOH website.

Valley Senior Living on Columbia, a skilled care facility on the Altru campus, announced, on its website on Tuesday, April 21,
that a staff member tested positive for COVID-19 Valley Senior Living nurses will administer about 1,450 COVID-19 tests across their three locations in Grand Forks to all employees and residents on Sunday and Monday, April 26-27.


Twenty-five Valley Senior Living employees who have household members who have tested positive for COVID-19, have household members who have been ordered to quarantine, or who otherwise may have come into contact with the virus have been placed on paid leave, a Valley Senior Living spokesperson said. Valley Senior Living employs just under 900 people and is home to about 550 residents.

According to the NDDOH website, 69 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in 17 long-term care facilities statewide as of Friday afternoon. North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum has emphasized the importance of protecting vulnerable residents in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, most recently by unveiling the Vulnerable Population Protection Plan, or VP3, at a press briefing on Tuesday.

"While we've had some outbreaks here in long-term care facilities and other congregate living facilities, we have an opportunity to act quickly," Burgum said. "This is a place where we really can work to save lives."

Chris Jones, executive director of the North Dakota Department of Human Services, said in Tuesday's briefing that the VP3 plan would be rolled out Wednesday and continuously developed over the coming weeks. The plan will focus on isolating positive cases, mobilizing rapid response teams to facilities where outbreaks occur and increasing testing within those facilities.

"As the governor said, North Dakota is fortunate to have the health care resources that we have, and, quite frankly, we more than believe we have enough, which makes this all possible," Jones said. "Now, we must deliver on delivering care and protecting those who are the most vulnerable."

It is unclear whether any Grand Forks long-term care facilities besides Maple View and the three Valley Senior Living centers have received COVID-19 tests as part of VP3. The North Dakota Joint Information Center declined to answer region-specific questions, as the plan is continuously being fine-tuned.

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