The City of Toronto is responding to a massive coronavirus outbreak at one of its nursing homes, leaving eight residents dead and 69 residents and staff being listed as having confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19.
According to an update provided by Toronto Public Health (TPH) officials on Wednesday, six of the eight residents at Seven Oaks Nursing Home who died were over 85 years old. The other two were between the ages of 60 and 85.
Dr. Elizabeth Rea, Toronto’s associate medical officer of health, said three of the residents died Tuesday night and early Wednesday. At least two of the deaths were previously announced.
The update also said six residents and nine staff are currently dealing with COVID-19 and there are 54 resident cases that have been deemed “probable.”
The Seven Oaks Nursing Home, located near Morningside Avenue and Ellesmere Road, is operated by the City of Toronto. According to the City, there are 249 residents at the facility.
Dessie Fanfair told Global News her mother lives at Seven Oaks and is still feeling OK. She said she and her family are feeling “confused” after being advised of the deaths by her mother’s doctor.
Fanfair, while holding back tears, said she has only been able her mother a couple of times thanks to a recreation assistant who has provided a connection through the video conferencing service Zoom.
“We are feeling so helpless. We can’t see her. We can’t go there,” she said.
“We are very scared … We are like a revolving door in that nursing home. We know a lot of the residents, we know most of the nurses there, so we’re very close to them and we fear for them.
“We want people to just stay home, stay home, stay home and let’s stop this virus from spreading.”
Mayor John Tory issued a statement Wednesday evening to extend his condolences and said the City is enforcing 14-day self-isolation orders.
“It is heartbreaking to learn that eight people have lost their lives at Seven Oaks to an outbreak of COVID-19 and other residents in the long-term care home and workers are suffering from the virus,” he said.
“We have ordered those who have the virus to quarantine for 14 days and moved to further protect those most vulnerable to it including residents of long-term care homes.”
Locally, TPH said there are outbreaks at 18 nursing homes and two retirement homes. The definition of an outbreak was recently changed to be just one confirmed case of COVID-19.
Deaths were also confirmed at the Rekai Centre Long-term Care Home at Sherbourne Place as well as at Extendicare Bayview (in the southwest unit).
News of the deaths comes as long-term care homes in different parts of Ontario have seen a growing number of cases. At the Pinecrest Nursing Home in Bobcaygeon, 14 residents have died.
As of Wednesday morning, the Ontario government said there were 2,392 cases of COVID-19 in the province. In total, 37 Ontario residents have died and 689 cases have been deemed resolved.
Full list of COVID-19 cases at nursing and retirement homes in Toronto as of 10:30 a.m. on April 1:
– Seven Oaks Long-term Care Home (eight residents dead, six confirmed resident cases, nine staff cases, 54 probable cases)
– St. Clair O’Connor Long-term Care Home (three confirmed resident cases, three staff cases)
– Extendicare Bayview’s southwest unit (resident in their 90s dead and linked to COVID-19, one resident case and two )
– West Park Healthcare Centre (two confirmed resident cases, two staff cases)
– Chartwell Gibson Long-term Care Home (three confirmed resident cases)
– Rekai Centre Long-term Care Home at Sherbourne Place (resident in their 60s dead, three resident cases)
– Elm Grove Living Centre Long-term Care Home (one confirmed staff case)
– West Side Long-term Care Home (one confirmed staff case)
– Eatonville Long-term Care Home (one confirmed staff case)
– Cedarvale Terrace Long-term Care Home (one confirmed staff case)
– Vermont Square Long-term Care Home (one confirmed staff case)
– Rockcliffe Long-term Care Home (one confirmed resident case)
– Altamont Community Care Centre (one confirmed staff case)
– Kensington Gardens Long-term Care Home (one confirmed resident case)
– Sunnybrook Veterans Centre (one confirmed resident case)
– McCall Centre Long-term Care Home unit (one confirmed staff case)
– Baycrest Apotex Long-term Care Centre (one confirmed staff case)
– House of Providence Long-term Care Home (one confirmed resident case)
– Terrace Gardens Retirement Home (three confirmed resident cases, one staff case)
– Village of Humber Heights Retirement Home (one confirmed resident case)