Update – Outbreak over: COVID-19 outbreak declared at Providence Care Transitional Care Centre

The former St Mary’s of the Lake Hospital, which currently serves as the Providence Care Transitional Centre, accessible from the back of the building. Photo by Samantha Butler-Hassan.

Update (Friday, Dec. 24, 2021)

The COVID-19 outbreak at Providence Care’s Transitional Care Centre has officially been declared over by both the healthcare organization, and Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) Public Health.

According to a press release from Providence Care, the outbreak, which was declared on Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, was declared over as of Friday, Dec. 24, 2021.

Providence Care said that all restrictions as a result of the outbreak have been lifted, however, the following safety measures remain in place at Providence Transitional Care Centre:

  • All staff members are actively screened daily for COVID-19 symptoms. They will continue to wear appropriate personal protective equipment, practice physical distancing and good hand hygiene.
  • Only Designated Care Partners are permitted to enter. General visitors are not permitted at this time. Designated Care Partners must pass screening and show proof of COVID-19 vaccination. If they do not pass screening or show proof of vaccination, they will not be permitted to enter. Individuals who pass screening must wear a mask at all times for the duration of their visit.

“Providence Care is actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation in the region to ensure our current protective measures at all sites continue to keep the people we serve, staff and physicians safe. Measures will be enhanced if needed,” the press release state.

For more information and details on visiting protocols and current protective measures in place at Providence Care facilities, visit their website at providencecare.ca.

Original article

The day after putting its Transitional Care Centre on a COVID-19 watch, Providence Care has officially declared an outbreak at the facility.

According to Providence Care, the number of cases at the Transitional Care Centre grew from one case yesterday, to five cases among patients and one staff member case as of Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021. The Centre remains under quarantine and is closed to both admissions and visitors. The outbreak protocol will be in place for a minimum of 14 days, and an investigation is underway, the organization said in a press release.

“Our teams are working closely with KFL&A Public Health and completing the necessary contact tracing, as well as notifying individuals who may be impacted. We’re also planning to retest all patients and staff, and closely monitor them for symptoms throughout the outbreak,” said Heather Candon, Infection Prevention and Control Director for Providence Care.

At the same time, a COVID-19 watch has been declared on Heritage 1, an inpatient unit at Providence Care Hospital, after a staff member there tested positive for COVID-19. Patients who had close contact with the positive case are now on quarantine, and general visits to the unit have been put on hold, Providence Care relayed.

“Because the positive case on Heritage 1 was a controlled and traceable exposure of a specific person, the risk of transmission to staff and patients is considered low,” explained Candon. “However, given the rise in community prevalence these patients will be tested for COVID-19 on a set schedule for the next 10 days.” 

In response to rapidly rising COVID-19 cases across the region, both Providence Care Hospital and Providence Care Transitional Care Centre will be implementing a number of additional protective measures beginning Friday, Dec. 3, 2021, including limiting the number of visitors allowed at one time, pausing communal dining, and halting leaves of absences.

“We understand these changes are difficult for the people we serve and their loved ones, but we all have a role to play to help stop this current spike in COVID-cases and community spread,” said Diana O’Grady, Providence Care’s Patient & Client Care Vice-President. “The safety of our patients, clients, staff, and physicians is our top priority, and these protective measures will help us ensure anyone who walks through our doors will be protected.”

All visitors must continue to show proof of vaccination and pass screening to enter the buildings, and wear a mask for the duration of their visit. Visit providencecare.ca for up-to-date information about COVID-19 protective measures in place at all Providence Care sites.

At the same time, the COVID-19 watch at Providence Manor continues. All patients and staff related to that watch have been tested with negative results, however, the watch remains in place as further testing continues.

Providence Care is a healthcare provider in southeastern Ontario, providing specialized care in aging, mental health and rehabilitation. The organization consists of Providence Care Hospital, Providence Transitional Care Centre, Providence Manor long-term care home, and more than 20 community-based support and mental health services across the region.

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