Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Albertsons Employee Tests Positive for Coronavirus
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Will Rambo, a project manager for Power Engineers and relative newcomer to Sun Valley, took this photo of Christina Kropp, a Realtor with Keller Williams, set against the Milky Way last Sunday. It offers the hope of better times ahead.
 
Wednesday, April 1, 2020
 

STORY BY KAREN BOSSICK

PHOTO BY WILLIAM RAMBO

An employee at Albertsons in Hailey has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Albertson’s announced on Tuesday that an employee at the Hailey store has tested positive for COVID-19, as has an employee who worked at both its Kuna and Homedale stores.

The Hailey store employee last worked on March 17.

Kathy Holland, public communications manager for the company, said both employees are receiving medical care and are in self-quarantine.

“Our thoughts are with the associate who tested positive and we hope for a full recovery,” she added.

All three stores will remain open with an enhanced cleaning and disinfection process in every department. The supermarket chain’s Crisis Response Team has spoken with employees who may have come in contact with the two employees and some may be asked to self-quarantine. Those employees will be eligible for up to 14 days quarantine pay.

In addition, the stores have gone through multiple cycles of enhanced cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting since both employees were last at work, according to Holland. And employees have been reminded to wash hands, disinfect check stands every hour, practice social distancing and stay home if they develop a fever, cough or shortness of breath.

“In an abundance of caution, we conducted a thorough cleaning and disinfection with guidance from third-party sanitation experts,” said Holland.

Albertsons, which has 36,815 employees in 2,260 stores throughout the country, is installing Plexiglas at its checkout stands to provide a protective barrier between customers and cashiers. All the stores should have them in a week, Holland said.

It also is putting posters around stores and marking off space on the ground to remind people to practice social distancing and remain two shopping carts apart to avoid contact with anyone who may have been infected by COVID-19 but is not exhibiting symptoms.

The chain also is offering free same-day and next-day delivery of prescriptions through May 1 to reduce traffic in stores. And it’s created “Contact Free” delivery procedures in which delivery drivers can sign for customers when delivering orders.

The news came as the number of cases in Idaho continued their relentless climb from 419 on Monday past 500 on Tuesday. By Tuesday evening 527 Idahoans had been confirmed to have the virus; nine have died.

Blaine County’s numbers surged from 148 to 192 on Tuesday. Ada County is reporting 195 cases.

Twenty-five health care workers are among the 45 who have been hospitalized so far, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. And six have been admitted to intensive care. However, the website tends to lag behind the reported cases from Idaho’s health districts because they’re based on completed case investigations.

Twenty-six of Idaho’s 44 counties have reported at least one confirmed case.

Among the health care workers who appear to be getting better is Jesse Vanderhoff, a 39-year-old nurse who was working in St. Luke’s Wood River drive-through testing tent before he became ill.

Jesse’s wife Emily Vanderhoof said he went from exhibiting a few cold-like symptoms to severe body aches and chills to needing a ventilator at a Boise hospital in just under four days.

While his recovery has been slow, he is now stable and he’s come a long way, Vanderhoof said.

“Today, when I was FaceTiming, he opened his eyes and that was amazing,” she told KBOI. “It’s the little things that matter. But he opened his eyes today so we’re doing good.”

 

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