York Hospital COVID-19 ‘Cluster’ Yields Suspended Services
A COVID-19 outbreak at York Hospital has resulted in temporary closures to some of its services in Kittery and Berwick, the hospital announced Friday.
An outbreak investigation by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has shown 17 positive infections among staffers and another six among patients, according to the hospital.
The hospital is calling this a "cluster" that began in the facility's inpatient area but now extends to other locations as well. The hospital said more than 83 staffers have tested negative and those who tested positive have exhibited mild symptoms.
“We have completed our first round of universal testing for staff members of Inpatient Adult Healthcare," York Hospital Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Evangeline Thibodeau said in a statement, "and will conduct our second round on Sunday, December 13. Due to the outbreak’s expansion to other services, testing will expand to include those caregivers with possible exposure as well.
"We will then proceed with interval testing every five days. The CDC does not recommend testing of all staff throughout the hospital.”
Temporary closures to walk-in service have been implemented in Kittery since December 5 and services in Berwick will also be closed starting Saturday due to staff complications.
The hospital said it had activated its Hospital Incident Command System (HCIS), which they hope will help facilitate a response to a surge in COVID-19 patients, according to the announcement. The HCIS team is currently redistributing staffers across the organization to various sites and areas with corresponding needs.