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An employee of STARS, Inc, a local area provider for physical, occupational, and respiratory therapy has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a joint news release from STARS and the Hiawatha Community Hospital.

This employee works at the Hiawatha Community Hospital location and is not involved in direct patient care. They are currently in isolation at home.

“We are thankful that our employee is doing well and look forward to her returning to work after her full recovery. Our staff members are vital to the care of our patients and community, even more so at this time,” said Dave Thompson, co-owner of STARS, Inc.

STARS, Inc. and Hiawatha Community Hospital have worked together to ensure consistent and diligent practices regarding return to work processes for employees in order to limit the risks of exposure to employees and patients.

“With testing criteria changing and more tests being completed, we will likely see an increase in positive cases in Brown County,” said Dr. Bryon Bigham, HCH Chief of Staff. “In an effort to reduce the risk of exposure for our employees and our patients, we are continuing to monitor all employees with daily temperature checks, all patients entering our facility go through diligent screening processes that include temperature checks, and everyone in the facility is required to wear a face covering or mask.”

Dr. Bigham went on to stress that, “it is still very important to remain diligent about social distancing, practice good hand hygiene, wear a face covering in public, and stay home if you are sick.”

John Broberg, CEO, Hiawatha Community Hospital, stated that “we know that COVID-19 is in the community.”

“We have increased COVID-19 testing in Hiawatha,” he said. “So far this month, we have already completed 100 tests and 190 since we started in March. Of these tests, 187 were not positive for COVID-19, three tests have been positive and four tests are still pending results.”

If you are experiencing symptoms, please Call Before You Go to the clinic, the hospital, or emergency room. This will allow for appropriate screening processes to be performed ahead of time in order to lessen potential exposure in our facility.

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