COVID 19 Facility Update

10/27/2020 10:34am- We are excited to announce all the one resident has returned to the main unit. The one patient that is left is expected to return to the main unit on Thursday. Yesterday, facility wide testing was complete and we did not have any new cases as far as resident go. We did one employee test positive and that individual was sent home. The employee who tested positive was a-symptomatic.

10/22/20 3:15pm- We had an employee test positive today. They have been sent home and are doing well at this time. We currently have a total of two employees off at this time due to COVID-19. We are excited to announce that two more of our residents recovered yesterday and have returned to the main unit.

I would like to setup anther family meeting via Face-time or Zoom. Please email me your preferred method of meeting and I will add you to my list!

10/19/2020 1:44pm- Just a reminder, we have our family question and answer meeting tomorrow at 10:00am. If you would rather do this by zoom, please send me an email and I will try to setup a zoom meeting. I know it is supposed to be cold out and I don’t blame anyone for not wanting to sit outside. However, I also know that some of our families do not have the option to do zoom so I will still try to do the face to face meeting outside at 10:00am as well and have our zoom members participate from my phone.

10/16/2020 2:32pm- Today we had one more resident test positive. This patients room was fully sanitized and moved to our isolation wing. All of our non-positive residents were tested again today and the rest of the patients tested negative. As of right now we will be switching all of our whirlpool baths over to bed baths to try and decrease the movement in the facility. We have also purchased yard sprayers and started spraying down all areas of the facility with 70% rubbing alcohol. All meals are being served in the residents rooms to prevent traffic. We have asked that all residents use their windows instead of using their fans when they are hot. We continue to pray for good results.

As disheartening as our news maybe, our staff have done an amazing job with this COVID outbreak. Several patients have already recovered and gone back to a normal healthy life. Unfortunately, this has not been the case at other nursing facilities in the state of Iowa.

10/15/2020 1:25pm – As of this update we have seven positive resident and three positive staff members. In a continued effort to stop the spread of the COVID virus, we have decided to take further quarantine efforts and have all residents remain in their rooms for the next 14 days. All cares will be provided in their rooms.


10/12/2020 1:53AM – As of this update we have had 18 total residents that have tested positive for COVID-19 since 9/28/2020. Out of these 18, 12 have recovered, 1 has passed away, and 5 remain in isolation. The 5 in isolation are doing very well!  We continue with a nurse and a CNA dedicated to their care of these residents.

We are so very fortunate to not have any cases in our memory unit thus far. We are doing our best to delegate same staff to each unit in attempts to halt any spread.  Unfortunately, we continue to have cases in the main unit.  We are not totally taken off guard by this, given the high number of cases in our town, county, and surrounding counties. It is everywhere. Despite our very best efforts, it did get in. For that we are disappointed, but not unprepared.  All along we have been preparing for this and are tackling the ‘outbreak’ the same way we tackled our prevention strategies – with an educated, proactive, aggressive front.  Your loved ones are why we do what we do every day, and for them we will continue to fight, until this all passes. Your unwavering support of our efforts is appreciated more than we can express.  COVID has been an exhausting, emotional, challenging fight for all involved. Together we will get through this!
~Jennifer Kuiken, BSN, RN
Director of Nursing

10/05/2020 2:37PM- We are excited to tell you that everyone is doing ok at this time! We want to thank everyone for their prayers and support during these difficult times.

10/02/2020 11:42AM- Today we have a total of five employees that have tested positive out of 75 employees. We also had three more residents test positive yesterday. All positive patients have been moved to isolation.

09/28/2020 4:30 PM- Hi there!  We became aware of a positive staff member today. Upon testing all of our facility residents we were able to trace-track the infection to hall two. 10 out of 55 residents tested positive. We have been doing twice a day assessments on all residents and everyone continues to be asymptomatic. We are so thankful for this but this makes it difficult for our residents and your loved ones to understand why they have to stay in their rooms and that they are “sick”. We are not allowing the cordless phone to go down this hall due to infection control but we do have a designated an I pad so you can face-time with your loved one.

As far as our staff goes, we have had three employees out of 75 employees test positive. To be honest, this is very low with our county positivity rates being above 16% you can check these rates here. 

What are we doing to limit the spread? Our COVID isolation has has been sealed off. All residents will be assessed twice a day or each shift and monitored very closely for signs and symptoms. Our whole facility has been switched over to paper plates. We have requested all nebulizers switched over to inhalers. We are working with the Iowa Department of Public Health and our Local Department of Public Health to determine what our next steps will be. Each and every resident and employee who is tested has to be uploaded in a system called Redcap. This is for CMS (The Center for Medicare and Medicaid) tracking.  We are not allowed to have outdoor or face to face visits with a COVID outbreak. We hope that in a week or two we can start window visits again but this will depend on our staffing and if our residents are all situated. 

We recently sent out a mailing asking if you or your loved one would like to have an MMR vaccine. We are starting to get a lot of consents back for this. We expect the solution to arrive sometime today or tomorrow. This was recommended by our medical director Dr. Geha. He believes that there is some benefit to a current MMR vaccine and a reduction of COVID symptoms. If you did not receive this or would like to know more please contact Jennifer our Director of Nursing.


9/24/2020 8:55AM- Just a reminder, if you are going to bring items with you to your visit for your loved one, all items need to be in a sealed container that can be sanitized. All clothing items should be labeled with your loved ones first initial and last name. Food items are allowed but need to be clearly dated. Housekeeping does not want to get ride of something that you might have just brought the prior day.

Face to face visits have been approved for the Atrium patients now. Starting Monday will will start having face to face visits. Please keep in mind, face to face visits for the Atrium can be very difficult for staff and will be on a case by case basis. We plan to start off with all visits being face to face and modify visits as necessary to ensure your loved one and our staff are safe.

9/23/2020 10:30AM- As of today our county rate has decreased to 16.9! This is down from 23% from two weeks ago. Because our county positivity rates are decreasing, we are starting to allow residents to move about the facility and talk with their friends who live here. Please help encourage your loved one to wear a mask and keep a six feet distance.

As far as facility visits go, we plan to restart outdoor visits Monday. They will be the exact same as last time only Jennifer will be setting up the visits for our main unit. The visits will still be by email only. Please email to setup an appointment. All visitis must be set up at least 48 hours in advance.

9/14/2020 12:46PM- COVID-19 Testing

As part of CMS’ commitment to protecting nursing home residents, and to boost the surveillance of COVID-19, nursing homes are now required to conduct testing of residents and staff.  More information about these requirements and guidelines can be found here.  These guidelines include testing staff on a certain frequency based on the COVID-19 positivity rate for the county the nursing home resides in.  Rates of county positivity are posted here. Facilities should monitor these rates every other week and adjust staff testing accordingly.
Happy Siesta Care Center is now able to rapid test staff and residents. Each test takes approximately 15-20 minutes. Happy Siesta is not in outbreak status. This means our staff have the right to refuse testing if they so chose unless they are symptomatic. We will not mandate staff testing or resident testing unless we have a positive case in our facility. At that point, our residents will be allowed to refuse testing but our staff will not.
As far as outside visits go, our current positivity rate is at 22.4%. This is only down .6% from the prior week. We do not feel at this time that it is safe to start outdoor visits. We will continue to review this on a weekly basis. We plan to resume visits when our county is under 10% for more than two consecutive weeks. We encourage family members to set up window visits with the nurse whenever possible.

8/31/20 11:55AM- We have great news! We have had four total positive cases here at Happy Siesta, three staff and one resident. All four have fully recovered with no permanent side effects. I could not be prouder of our team, many other homes in our area have not been this lucky.

8/31/20 11:52AM- I am sorry, I just realized why a few of you might think that we have restarted visits. We have not. We are not restarting visits due to Remsen being declared a hot spot. Our case counts are currently over 23%. Until we start to see a trending decline in case counts, we will not be restarting visits or moving into the next phase.

8/26/20 11:23AM- We are excited to announce that our previously positive resident is expected to be fully cleared to return back to our main unit tomorrow. This resident has had very mild symptoms during their stay in the quarantine area and has full recovered. This resident will be asked to remain in their room under close supervision for the next 4 days as an added precaution.

8/26/2020 11:21AM- We were notified yesterday that another employee has tested positive for COVID-19. This employee was taken of work on 8/20/20 due to other issues and will remain off work until they are cleared by the CDC and the IDPH to return to work.

8/20/2020 5:30AM- We had three more employees tested. One of the three employees has come back positive. The individual that tested positive has been taken off work per the CDC guild lines.  We also now have one positive resident. This individual has been transferred to a different part of the facility away from the general population. The patient is stable and is experiencing very mild symptoms. We have also designated specialized staff to this area in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. All high touch surfaces are being wiped down regularly and all staff are being screened at the start and the end of each shift. All residents are being screening at least once a shift for symptoms.

8/16/2020 2:00PM- We currently have two employees who have tested positive. Both employees are at home and experiencing very mild if any symptoms. Any employee who starts to experience any symptoms will be taken off work per the CDC’s guidance. The employee will not be allowed to return to work until they have cleared all recommenced standard of return to work program.


As of 8/14/2020 2:27PM- We currently have one positive employee. This employee has worked very minimally and had on full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) on during their single shift in the last five days. This employee had minimal contact with our residents and is currently off work and following the Centers for Disease and Control (CDC) guidance. At this time, no residents have exhibited signs or symptoms. We are currently assessing each resident every shift. All employees are being screened in and screened out. All high touch surfaces are being sanitized several times throughout the day. For precautionary measures, we will be moving back to phase one and stopping all visitations until further notice. This is for the safety of our residents and our community. We will also no longer be allowing our beautician to start services yet.

We are encouraging family member’s to Face-time with their loved ones. If you would like to Face-Time with your loved one, please contact Sammy at Happy Siesta Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm (712) 786-1117.