VALE — Pioneer Place, an assisted living and skilled nursing facility, and the only nursing home in Malheur County, is closed for visitors due to a staff member testing positive for the novel coronavirus COVID-19.

The facility has reported that only one person, a staff member, has contracted the COVID-19 virus to date, but the person was infected during their time off did not take it into the building, according to Tom Hathaway, nursing home administrator.

“We have had several scares,” he said, but nothing that has turned positive inside the building.

Each employee is interviewed when they go to work about their contacts outside the facility, whether they may have been exposed, and their temperatures are taken before they start work.

Pioneer Place is still accepting admissions, Hathaway said, but with restricted protocols to ensure new residents do not take in the virus.

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