Two nursing homes operated by Rochester Regional Health are reporting 27 residents testing positive for COVID-19.
Rochester Regional Chief Medical Officer Dr. Robert Mayo revealed the information on Friday, explaining that 24 of those residents had previously been vaccinated against the coronavirus; none of them showed symptoms of COVID-19.
Mayo said that of the three residents who were unvaccinated, one of them has been hospitalized, the other two do have coronavirus symptoms.
Of the 24 residents, 17 are at the DeMay Living Center in Newark, Wayne County, the other 10 are at the Clifton Springs Nursing Home in Ontario County.
Mayo said the fact that so many of the residents testing positive for the virus are not showing symptoms is why it’s so important to be vaccinated.
“The vaccine is actually working. That among these vulnerable nursing home patients, they are benefiting significantly by having been vaccinated and by the care that they are receiving in those facilities,” Mayo said.
Mayo said that while 80% to 90% of the nursing home residents in those two facilities have been vaccinated against COVID-19, only about 35% to 45% of nursing home staff have been vaccinated.
He said that is not unusual compared to some other nursing homes across the state, and Rochester Regional Health continues "to work with those teams, provide education and work through any hesitancy issues that may be causing them to decline at this time.”
Mayo said that employees at the nursing homes are tested twice a week for COVID-19 and wear the required personal protective equipment. He noted that it's difficult to determine how the residents who tested positive became infected — whether it was from contact with staff or visitors.
Because of the recent outbreak of cases, visitation has been halted temporarily at the DeMay and Clifton Springs nursing homes, except for end-of-life and compassionate care visitation, as required by state guidelines.