Riverside Place Long Term Care Home in Windsor saw an explosion of new COVID-19 cases Monday evening after 17 residents and a staff member tested positive for the virus.
The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) had declared an outbreak at the home on Nov. 20 after a single staff member tested positive. Following the declaration, all residents and staff in the home’s Peche unit were tested. On Monday evening, results came back that 17 residents and another staff members had tested positive.
In a statement, Revera, the company which operates the Riverside Place, said that none of those cases are showing symptoms. It added that the residents are isolating in their rooms and the staff members are in isolation at home, and that all remaining residents and staff would be tested at the direction of public health officials.
“We are working very closely with Public Health officials and are following pandemic outbreak protocols and infection control practices. All residents are monitored twice daily for symptoms,” the statement said.
The sharp and sudden increase means that Riverside Place is behind only Iler Lodge when it comes to confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the region’s long-term care homes. The latter has 21 cases and is also run by Revera.
There are currently five outbreaks at long term care and retirement homes in Windsor-Essex, according to the health unit’s website.
In Tuesday’s public health briefing, WECHU medical officer of health Dr. Wajid Ahmed acknowledged that it was unusual to see so many cases suddenly.
“We will be looking at these cases very carefully, just to make sure that we’re not missing anything,” Ahmed said.
Revera says the home is taking a number of measures to contain the outbreak. They include enhanced cleaning, cancelling all indoor and outdoor visits temporarily, and ensuring that all residents of the Peche unit remain in their rooms at all times.
“We recognize how difficult these measures are for residents and their families. We appreciate the patience and understanding of families as we put these precautions in place for the safety of the residents,” the statement reads. “Revera continues to do everything we can to keep our residents and employees safe as we work to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at our long term care homes and retirement residences.”