Dr. Charles Gardner, the medical officer of health for the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, said today that it was a staff member at Orillia’s Leacock Retirement Lodge that tested positive for COVID-19 last week.
That’s why the health unit declared an outbreak at the Forest Avenue facility on Sept. 17.
Since then, all residents and staff members have been tested for the virus. All the tests came back negative, Gardner revealed today during a media briefing.
The staff member who tested positive must self-quarantine for 14 days.
An outbreak is declared in a congregant-care facility such as a long-term care home when one or more people test positive.
The outbreak remains in effect for two weeks after the initial case. It is declared over if nobody else within the facility becomes infected within 14 days.
Julie Malandrino, general manager of the facility, said in an email sent to residents and others on Sept. 17 that the facility is taking every precaution to keep residents and staff safe.
"While I cannot speak to the specifics of the case ... our infection prevention and control practices will remain in effect in order to further support the health and safety of our residents and staff and to promote the long-term sustainability of a COVID-free Lodge," Malandrino said.
She said the facility will "continue to follow all directives mandated by Public Health, the Ministry of Health and The Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority (RHRA)" and the province.
While in outbreak, all non-essential visits are suspended and "our doors to the Lodge have been locked."
She said the dining room has been closed. Instead, in-suite dining has been implemented at the Forest Avenue facility.
"Recreation activities are cancelled and residents are asked not to leave the building unless it has been approved as an essential appointment," Malandrino said in the email.
If a resident chooses to go on a "leave of absence," readmission will not occur until the outbreak has been declared over.Leacock Lodge is owned and operated by Jarlette Health Services.