COVID breakout at nursing home for elderly

THE Ministry of Health and Wellness, with the support of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, is conducting expedited testing for COVID-19 at the Golden Age Home in Vineyard Town, St Andrew.

This follows the discovery of a cluster of cases at the facility, which was uncovered as part of the health ministry’s ongoing islandwide surveillance of senior citizens’ homes and infirmaries.

“Forty-three of 72 samples taken from residents and staff at the facility have so far returned a positive result. The testing of all 428 residents and 162 staff members is expected to be completed in the next two to three days,” a statement from the health ministry said last night.

In the meantime, emergency management protocols have been triggered at the facility, with those having tested positive being put in isolation, while others are put into quarantine pending the outcome of their results.

“All residents and staff are to be monitored closely even as the section of the facility from where the initial positive tests have come is managed with enhanced infection prevention and control procedures,” said the statement.

“The Ministry of Health and Wellness will also be providing support to review and strengthen the infection prevention and control measures at the home and to review the protocols to increase the surveillance and monitoring of all such facilities to reduce transmission among the vulnerable population,” said Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton.

Both ministries have also identified a team of caregivers to provide the necessary care for the residents at the home.

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