UPDATE: Three more residents tested positive for COVID-19 since the initial outbreak was announced, said Island Health on Friday evening. The health authority has conducted more than 100 COVID-19 tests since yesterday.
PREVIOUSLY POSTED: Five residents of Longlake Chateau seniors home in Nanaimo have COVID-19.
Island Health issued a news release Thursday advising of the outbreak of new cases at the independent living facility.
The health authority says residents who are COVID-positive, as well as their close contacts, are self-isolating.
Dr. Richard Stanwick, Island Health’s chief medical health officer, told the News Bulletin that there was 100 per cent uptake of the vaccine at Longlake Chateau, and explained how an outbreak could have happened there.
“It may have been either one of two things,” he said. “Somebody introduced it early on when these people had not developed a full immune response, or somebody might have even been incubating the virus at the time that they received the vaccine.”
He said COVID-19 has been shown to be a “lethal virus” in some seniors-home settings and so if the vaccine can “blunt” the significant impacts on patient outcomes, then it will have worked.
“There is an interval in time [after which] we should be seeing that high level of protection and that the worst effects of the virus, even it it’s acquired, are going to be much less significant than what we’re seeing with an actual infection,” Stanwick said.
Island Health noted in the release that it’s working with Atria Retirement Canada, which operates Longlake Chateau, to provide support to help protect the health of residents and staff.
“During this time, Island Health will have additional presence at the site to take any further actions required, support the facility and answer questions from staff, residents and family members,” the release noted.
The health authority added that “enhanced control measures” and cleaning have already been put in place, and admissions and visitation will be restricted during the outbreak. All residents and staff will be tested for COVID-19.
“Island Health has implemented comprehensive strategies to prevent and respond to COVID-19 in long-term care, acute care, assisted living and independent living facilities,” the release noted.
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