‘Critical period’ for Lambton nursing homes

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Dr. Sudit Ranade, Lambton's Acting Medical Officer of Health,

Lambton’s public health officials say this is a ‘critical period’ in the fight against COVID-19 in long term care homes.
April 16, Lambton County announced an employee involved in direct patient care at Lambton Meadowview Villa had tested positive for COVID-19. Jane Joris, general manager of long term care, says the employee started getting a fever at work and was sent home.
It was the second seniors’ home to have an outbreak of the virus. Six people at Landmark Village in Sarnia have died of COVID-19.
Lambton’s struggles with the respiratory virus in nursing homes is not uncommon. About half of Ontario’s seniors homes are dealing with COVID-19 and about half of the 622 deaths recorded by Tuesday were seniors.
When the province started to ramp up testing last week, long term care homes were top of the list.
In Lambton, Meadowview and Landmark Village were the first homes to have every staff member and every resident tested. Since the test began, the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 at Landmark has jumped from 23 to 34.
But at Meadowview Villa, so far, there have been no other cases reported.
Lambton’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Sudit Ranade, is watching to see if that will change.

“There are a couple of things we have going for us,” says Ranade. “A lot of the restrictions that would have been done only after an outbreak has been declared have actually been done preemptively…well before we knew there were cases.
“So that’s something we have going for us.”
And Ranade says it is too soon to say whether there will be more cases at Meadowview, considering the incubation period is up to 14 days.
“Right now the focus is to see who is going to be symptomatic over the next couple of days; so this is a critical period for that outbreak.”
As of Tuesday, there were 148 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 in Lambton. Fourteen people have died. Another 54 people have recovered.
Dr. Michael Haddad, chief of staff at Bluewater Health, says the people working in the COVID-19 are buoyed by those recoveries. And he says it appears Lambton’s outbreak has peaked.
“Two weeks ago, when we were in the midst of it, there were 32 patients. Our ICU had about 7 patients who were quite critically ill.
“Many have improved and went home; we also lost some of them. Half of the people in ICU didn’t make it.
“It has been a sad couple of weeks. But the trend is in decline.”