COVID streches SCBHS staff, care to their limits

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By Reed Anfinson
Swift County-Benson Health Services (SCBHS) saw a positivity rate among those it tested for COVID-19 last week at 34.4%, an extraordinarily high percentage.  The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) say the positivity rate should be 5% or less to slow the spread of COVID-19.
At the same time, the number of people it is testing for COVID-19 has shot up.
“Our testing has increased to 120 to 150 people per week right now,” Chief Nursing Officer and Co-CEO Melissa McGinty-Thompson told the Swift County Board of Commissioners at their Nov. 16 meeting. “That is just our curbside testing. It does not include anyone tested inside the hospital or the clinic.”
SCBHS is continuing to offer testing twice a day but many times it has had to add on a third time just because of access and the sheer volume of testing, McGinty-Thompson said.
“We did shut down visitors as of last Friday (Nov. 12) because the staff are getting very worn out right now,” she said. “We are not quite sure what avenue to take because we just continue to see an increase in the positivity.

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