Nine residents of a nursing home in Bobcaygeon, Ontario have lost their lives after becoming infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus, according to CTV News.
Pinecrest nursing home’s medical director, Dr. Michelle Snarr, noted that nine residents have died “so far” and more deaths are expected.
According to the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit, 14 staff members and three residents have now tested positive for coronavirus.
Officials declared an outbreak at the long-term care facility on March 18 and said that no while no further testing has been conducted, there are now 35 people showing symptoms.
In a statement, Dr. Lynn Noseworthy, a medical officer of health said, “In following our provincial outbreak guidelines, we did not do any additional tests on residents as we already had confirmation the virus was in the home.”
“This outbreak of COVID-19 is currently the largest outbreak in the province and really brings home how devastating and deadly this virus can be for older people in our communities,” Noseworthy remarked.
“I am asking everyone to do everything they can to stop the spread of this virus—if not to protect yourself but to protect others who need our care.”
The public health unit said that “all proper procedures” were followed by staff to avoid further spread of the virus.
All sick staff stayed at their homes and began self-isolation while arrangements for tests were being made. Residents were also put into isolation and all group activities were cancelled.
No visitors have been able to enter the facility since March 14.
Officials noted that though protective equipment was used by staff members who weren’t showing symptoms of the virus at the time, they were likely in the incubation period and had already been infected.
In a news release, Mary Carr, the administrator of the nursing home said, “This is truly a horrible time for the families and friends of the residents, as well as our staff.”
“We have a number of medically fragile and vulnerable people living in our home; our residents are like family to our staff. Our sympathies go out to all of the families and friends of the people we have lost.”