A Winnipeg man is weighing his options as the care home looking after his grandmother is inviting family members inside while it deals with a coronavirus outbreak.
The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) said Golden Links Lodge is dealing with a significant staffing challenge related to the outbreak and the home has asked relatives of its residents to come in and sit by their bedside to monitor any change in condition.
Jordan Hanna’s grandmother tested positive last Sunday and isn’t sure yet if he’ll make arrangements to have someone with her. His family is also trying to look after his 93-year-old grandfather and keep the virus away from him.
“It’s something to talk (about) with family because there’s a risk,” Hanna said.
“I’m a 28-year-old powerlifter and I feel invincible but I’ve had history with pneumonia so I’m scared. My sister can’t because she has two kids and a family.”
Hanna’s mom passed away earlier this year, not related to COVID-19, and is terrified of losing another family member.
“It makes your heart sink,” he said.
An outbreak was declared at Golden Links Lodge on Nov. 11. The WRHA said 42 of the 81 residents have tested positive for coronavirus and staff can’t keep up.
Arrangements were made with the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service to provide immediate support Thursday night. WRHA respiratory and community intravenous teams have also been onsite.
An exemption has also been made to allow staff members from other health care sectors to help at the home.
Shared Health’s chief nursing officer Lanette Siragusa said any family members entering the facility will be given PPE and training.
“The offer of loved ones and care givers to come in is not to replace the clinical care that they need but to be a support to the residents,” Siragusa said.
Hanna doesn’t blame the workers at the facility for the situation, but is calling on the government to call in the military.
“This isn’t okay,” Hanna said. “The military needs to be in yesterday.”