Peconic Landing reported last week that there are no longer any known COVID-19 cases on the Greenport campus. The lifecare and retirement community had been the location of the some of the earliest known cases of the virus in Suffolk County back in early March.
In a letter to family members of the community, Peconic Landing’s president and CEO, Robert Syron, said the last member who had tested positive has now recovered. The May 12 letter from Mr. Syron was posted on Peconic Landing’s website.
“Mitigating the spread of the virus across our campus has only been possible due to the numerous safety protocols we put in place over the last two months,” Mr. Syron said. “I am very proud of our team for their persistence, commitment and tenacity in providing excellent service and care while ensuring the highest safety standards possible.”
He added that while the campus is free of COVID-19 as of now, they will remain diligent to keep it that way. Visitation to the campus remains restricted as safety protocols remain in place. Peconic Landing is in the process of finalizing a “safe and structured visitation plan” that will be communicated to members when it is set.
The virus has proved to be particularly damaging for the population in nursing homes. Peconic Landing operates a skilled nursing facility while also serving as a home for independent members. The latest data from the State Department of Health shows 475 confirmed fatalities at New York nursing homes and additional 227 presumed fatalities. In that state data, Peconic Landing is listed with six confirmed fatalities and three that are presumed deaths.
Peconic Landing further broke down its number last week in another update posted on its website which shows a total of 13 deaths. Eight of those were at the skilled nursing facility, which is called The Shores.
Two deaths were reported at both Habor North — the one-bedroom apartments where care services are provided — and Harbor South — the private memory suites that have shared neighborhood amenities. One death was reported among the independent living community.
A total of 26 COVID-19 cases were found among members and there have now been 13 recoveries.
“The entire Peconic Landing family expresses our deepest condolences to the loved ones and friends our beloved members have left behind,” Mr. Syron said in last Wednesday’s update.
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Mr. Syron noted in that release that Peconic Landing has submitted its plan in response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive order that mandates nursing homes and assisted living facilities test all staff members twice a week for COVID-19 until June 9.
Over the last two months Peconic Landing has secured its own testing capabilities for both diagnostic and serology testing to identify team members who actively have the virus or have developed the antibodies.
Mr. Syron said even with those testing capabilities in place, the implementation of testing required under the executive order is “massive” and “difficult for all in our industry.”
There have been 41 team members out of 377 who have tested positive for COVID-19 at Peconic Landing. A total of 38 of those employees have fully recovered.
“Less than one percent of our total employees are currently recovering from COVID-19 and are on paid leave,” Mr. Syron said. “We are in communication with them. Our staffing levels remain high and we are fully able to provide services and care across our campus.”
The latest data on fatalities from the state DOH shows there have been no fatalities reported at San Simeon by the Sound in Greenport. The facility has also said there have been no COVID-19 cases.
Steven Smyth, San Simeon’s executive VP and administrator, said on their website: “While I realize there is a significant amount of luck involved in that, without question the early and decisive actions we took administratively, and the ongoing tireless dedication of our clinical and support team is what really sets us apart.”
New cases in the county continue to decline. On Saturday, Suffolk County reported 223 new cases, bringing the total to more than 42,000.
Total cases in Southold Town stand at 404. That figure includes any positives from antibody tests.