Fairfield Park claiming small victory

Fairfield Park Nursing Home Wallaceburg. (Photo via Fairfield Park)

It seems a large outbreak at a Wallaceburg nursing home is slowly coming under control.

Fairfield Park said on Tuesday the number of active cases of COVID-19 is down to 60 — 30 among residents and 30 among staff. CK Public Health reported 93 total cases during the recent and second outbreak at the home which was declared on January 10 when a staff member tested positive for the virus. The first two residents tested positive on January 23.

The first outbreak declared at Fairfield Park ran from December 17, 2020, to December 22, 2020.

“We have started receiving the results from our ongoing weekly surveillance testing efforts that took place yesterday [Monday]. All results have come back negative with the exception of one staff member who is now self-isolating at home,” said Fairfield Park Administrator Tracey Maxim. “This is positive news for us and, as resident and staff cases continue to be resolved, Public Health has confirmed that our total number of active cases at Fairfield Park have decreased.”

The home had a death on Thursday but CK Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Colby said it was not caused by COVID-19 even though the person tested positive for the virus. CK Public Health added the death was caused by other underlying conditions but wouldn’t reveal a cause of death citing privacy laws.

The first long-term care death in Chatham-Kent caused by COVID-19 happened at Fairfield Park on Saturday and was reported by CK Public Health on Monday.

The Wallaceburg home is being helped by staff from the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance, the Red Cross, Chatham-Kent Public Health, the Ministry of Long-Term Care, the local health integration network, Ontario Health, and local paramedics. Maxim said the Red Cross was in the home this weekend and they are impressed with the infection prevention and control measures currently in place. A team of 10 Red Cross staff will be joining Fairfield’s team on Thursday to further support its care team.

Fairfield Park is thanking everyone for the support and their “kind words of encouragement.” Maxim said all of the messages are posted in the home for staff to read and a student tribute video is shown on the televisions for all to see.

“Our staff have truly been overwhelmed by your emails, community sponsored staff meals, and most recently, the dedicated thank you video from students at Christ The King, St. Elizabeth, Holy Family, and Sacred Heart Catholic School who are sending messages of hope to residents and staff at Fairfield Park,” said Maxim. “Knowing that our community stands behind our home contributes in a real way to the work we do and reminds us that we will get through this together.”

Meantime, CK Public Health reported the outbreak at Lambton-Kent Composite School in Dresden was declared over on Tuesday and the outbreak at the Tilbury Manor Nursing Home was declared over on Monday. The number of active outbreaks across Chatham-Kent is down to six — four institutional, one in a workplace, and another at a congregate living setting.

The outbreaks at two units of the Chatham hospital continue.

The number of active cases overall is down by three to 138 in total after 12 new cases and 15 cases resolved. The number of local people with COVID-19 at the Chatham hospital is up by two to a total of eight.