COVID-19 outbreak declared at Extendicare Kingston

Extendicare Kingston, located on Queen Mary Road. Photo by Cris Vilela.

The third COVID-19 outbreak in the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) region over the past week has occurred at Kingston’s Extendicare long-term care facility.

According to Laura Gallant, Extendicare spokesperson, two positive COVID-19 test results were received for two team members at Extendicare Kingston, who are currently isolating at home.

“All residents and all staff have been tested and all results have come back negative. We remain diligent in symptom screening for all staff, ensuring rapid testing for team members prior to contact with residents in the affected unit, enhancing surveillance testing for all staff and continue to adhere to universal PPE requirements and enhanced infection prevention and control practices throughout the home,” Gallant said.

“Extendicare Kingston continues to work closely with Public Health to ensure protections for our residents and our care team amid the fourth wave.”

Extendicare announced in late August that it was joining several of other national long-term care providers in a coalition that are making COVID-19 vaccination mandatory for their long-term care and retirement home staff. However, staff members who are not fully vaccinated will not be placed on immediate leave of absence until Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021, according to a press release published on the Extendicare Kingston website.

Nevertheless, Gallant expressed satisfaction with regard to the high vaccination rates amongst both staff and residents at the Kingston-based Extendicare facility.

“We are pleased to see the positive response to vaccination among our team members, with 96 per cent of our staff fully vaccinated to date and administration of further doses ongoing, in alignment with our national mandatory vaccination policy. To ensure enhanced protections for our residents as per provincial guidelines, we continue to work with our health partners to administer third doses to residents, with more than 76 per cent of our residents having received their third shot to date,” she said.

Gallant explained that general visitation has been paused for the affected wing of the facility “in consultation with Public Health,” however, she noted that essential caregivers continue to visit wearing the required personal protective equipment (PPE).

“We continue to provide regular updates to our families and remain focused firmly on the safety of our residents and team members,” Gallant said.

“We will remain vigilant to protect our community until this virus is no longer a threat.”

The other two current COVID-19 outbreaks in the KFL&A region are at Loughborough Public School, and École Élémentaire Publique Madeleine-De-Roybon.

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