‘It’s terrifying’: Winnipeg woman’s father tests positive in home care COVID-19 outbreak

Parkview Place care facility in Winnipeg. File/Global News

A Winnipeg woman says she is becoming increasingly anxious after her father tested positive for COVID-19 while staying at a care home dealing with an outbreak.

Danielle Mallett, a 23-year-old student, has only seen her dad for about two hours since March as care home restrictions have kept her away.

Her 63-year-old father suffered a stroke which left him paralyzed several years ago. He’s since been in care at Parkview Place.

“It was always my worst fear that he would contract COVID,” Mallett said.

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Mallett’s dad is now one of 92 Parkview Place residents who have contracted the novel coronavirus since an outbreak was declared on Sept. 15.

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A total of 18 resident have died as of Monday afternoon.

“It’s past concern and it’s honestly terrifying,” Mallett said.

Parkview Place, which is currently facing a staffing shortage, has had a total of 29 workers test positive as well.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) showed up to the home unannounced last week for an inspection.

The five-person team identified some concerns in infection prevention and control, such as missing PPE zone signage.

However, the biggest issue has to do with staffing.

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The WRHA said staff are burned out and Revera, which runs Parkview Place, has exhausted recruitment strategies.

“They do need approximately 40 additional health care aids and 20 additional nursing staff to really be able to sustain staffing at the site.,” Gina Trinidad, Chief Health Operations Officer for the WRHA, said.

Parkview is currently utilizing contracted security staff to provide general support in the facility and monitoring of residents, she said.

Dr. Rhonda Collins, the Chief Medical Officer for Revera, said resident care isn’t being compromised.

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“The level of resident care doesn’t change,” Collins said. “It just means that staff are working more diligently.”

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Mallett said she is pleased with the efforts of the staff currently taking care of her father, who is dealing with a mild case of COVID-19, but has symptoms that are changing on a daily basis.

She’s also concerned about her dad’s mental health, she added.

“He has lost so much freedom from the stroke he had,” Mallett said.

“It’s a struggle every day to work with regaining that freedom and now being isolated in his room for two weeks, unable to leave those four walls in incredibly isolating for him.”

Mallett said she feels a sense of comfort knowing extra steps are being taken at Parkview and hopes it will be enough to get the coronavirus outbreak under control.

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