Staff members at Parsons State Hospital test positive for COVID-19
Confirmed COVID-19 Cases at Parsons State Hospital and Training Center
TOPEKA – Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) Secretary Laura Howard announced today that three staff members and one resident at Parsons State Hospital and Training Center (PSHTC) have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last week. These are the first confirmed positive cases at any of the four state hospitals.
All three staff are female and over 25 years of age. The resident has been moved to an on-grounds location being used as an isolation unit. To protect their identity, no further information will be released.
KDADS and PSHTC staff, including the hospital’s medical director, have been in consultation with Kansas Department for Health and Environment (KDHE) officials and Labette and Crawford County officials about guidance and the next steps to address these circumstances.
As an added precaution and given new guidelines from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, surgical masks were distributed to all staff on Saturday, April 4. Staff in all areas of the hospital will wear masks when social distancing is difficult. Staff and resident temperatures have been taken once daily since March 20. Beginning today, temperatures will be taken twice daily.
“With the continued support and dedication of our hospital staff along with the leadership of KDHE and Governor Kelly, we are prepared to continue to provide a safe and healthy environment for all residents in our state hospitals,” Secretary Howard said. “These circumstances, while uncertain, highlight more than ever our commitment to patient care.”
PSHTC, opened in 1903 as a state hospital for epileptics, was renamed Parsons State Hospital and Training Center in 1957 and is one of two residential treatment, training, and care facilities operated by the State of Kansas to serve individuals with intellectual disabilities. The hospital occupies 43 buildings on 163 acres.
For current information on COVID-19 in Kansas, and to sign up for updates, go to the KDHE COVID-19 Resource Center at kdhe.ks.gov/coronavirus.