A third resident at a north Edmonton seniors’ care facility, which has been dealing with an outbreak of COVID-19, has died of the disease.
Shepherd’s Care Foundation–Kensington confirmed the death on the company’s website Friday afternoon.
Alberta Health said it was a woman in her 70s.
Alberta’s chief medical officer of health said Friday Shepherd’s Care-Kensington has recorded 29 cases and three deaths.
“Absolutely, that’s a concern for us,” Dr. Deena Hinshaw said.
“Because the incubation period can be up to two weeks, we can continue to see new cases in some of these facilities even after all control measures have been put in place.
“That facility is certainly one that the medical officers of health and public health team in Edmonton zone are working very closely with.”
On April 10, the facility confirmed its first death due to the novel coronavirus — a man in his 80s with pre-existing health conditions, who lived in the rental apartments at the site.
In its latest update on April 24, Shepherd’s Care said two residents in the seniors’ rental apartments/condos died after testing positive for COVID-19 and one resident in long-term care with COVID-19 passed away.
The Kensington site is broken up into different areas — the long-term and supportive living areas as well as an independent living area.
Shepherd’s Care said 19 residents in the Kensington apartments have tested positive for COVID-19, as well as one resident in supportive living at Kensington Village.
It said five staff and three Alberta Health Services case workers at Kensington Village also tested positive.
Until April 24, the long-term care area had no confirmed cases.
On April 10, Hinshaw said outbreak protocols were put in place and movement between the different areas of the Kensington facility were restricted.
She said on Friday she wasn’t sure if COVID-19 testing of asymptomatic residents and staff had been requested or done at the Shepherd’s Care facility, but that Alberta Health would look into that.
Hinshaw previously announced expanded testing, including for those who are asymptomatic, at continuing care locations with outbreaks, based on the local health teams’ clinical judgment.
“I did advise my colleagues… for outbreaks that were currently underway that they could use their clinical judgement based on whether or not they felt that particular outbreak would benefit from that testing of all current residents and staff,” she explained Friday.
“And that’s because if there was an outbreak where there was really no spread happening, if it had been say, three weeks with no new cases, then there may be more risk than benefit.”
According to Alberta Health, a confirmed outbreak is declared at a continuing care facility as soon as one staff member or resident tests positive for COVID-19.