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Coronavirus: AHS appoints AgeCare to help operate Calgary’s Millrise Seniors Village

Millrise Seniors Village in Calgary, pictured on Monday, April 27, 2020. Michael King/Global News

Alberta Health Services has signed a contract with AgeCare Health Services — a provider of aging-in-place communities — to oversee the management of Millrise Seniors Village in Calgary as the facility deals with a novel coronavirus outbreak, according to a news release issued Monday.

AHS said it will support the site’s day-to-day operations in collaboration with AgeCare, “ensuring continued support with staffing as this transition occurs over the coming days.”

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“This decision was made in [the] interest of the health and safety of Millrise Seniors Village residents and staff and to manage the COVID-19 outbreak on site,” said Dr. Verna Yiu, president and CEO of AHS.

“Our first and most important priority is to ensure safe and uninterrupted care for all residents at this facility. AgeCare is a well-respected continuing care provider, and AHS is pleased they have committed to providing care delivery and management for Millrise Seniors Village.”

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The home has 155 residents and 70 people on staff, AHS said.

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At the facility to date, 25 residents and 12 staff have tested positive for the novel coronavirus and four seniors have died, AHS said.

“AgeCare is willing to assist AHS during this time to ensure that resident and staff safety remains a priority during this COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. AgeCare will offer management expertise consistent with our values of trust, respect, quality and teamwork,” said Dr. Hasmukh Patel, president and CEO of AgeCare.

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In mid-April, officials declared an outbreak at the care home, and AHS said it took immediate action to “improve staffing levels, establish outbreak management protocols and institute infection prevention and control measures at the site.”

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On Monday, April 27, AHS said over that weekend, it assigned 20 staff to the facility to help deliver care.

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The provincial health authority added that residents are screened for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, “regularly” and workers are required to wear personal protective equipment in every patient interaction.

“This measure protects residents and other workers from inadvertent exposure from a health-care worker who could be without symptoms but still be infectious,” AHS said.

READ MORE: 104 Albertans have died of COVID-19, 70 new cases confirmed Monday

As of Monday, 621 cases have been confirmed at continuing care facilities in the province and 75 residents have died, according to Alberta Health.