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COVID-19: Interior Health declares outbreak over at Kelowna retirement resort

The outbreak at Sandalwood Retirement Resort in Kelowna was first declared on April 23, and grew from 11 cases and one death to 28 cases and two connected deaths. Global News

An outbreak at an Okanagan retirement resort is over, according to Interior Health.

The outbreak at Sandalwood Retirement Resort had 28 cases, comprised of 26 residents and two staff members, along with two connected deaths.

Sandalwood is a large independent living residence. The outbreak was first declared on April 23, with 10 residents and one staff member having tested positive, plus one death.

Read more: COVID-19: Interior Health asking residents to register for vaccine shots

“Even though we had cases, this outbreak still shows that immunization is working,” said Dr. Albert de Villiers, Interior Health’s chief medical health officer.

“The most important step we can all take is to get vaccinated — this protects all of us and I encourage everyone to register today so that you can be immunized as soon as possible.”

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“I want to thank the staff and community for their dedication during this outbreak,” said Interior Health president and CEO Susan Brown.

“On behalf of Interior Health, I extend our condolences to the family of the two residents who passed away during the outbreak.”

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Two other facilities within the Interior Health region are still experiencing an outbreak:

  • Orchard Haven, a long-term care facility in Keremeos with two cases (one resident, one staff member).
  • Spring Valley, a long-term care facility in Kelowna with 38 cases (26 residents, 12 staff/other). Six deaths have been connected to the outbreak.

On Friday, Interior Health was asked about COVID-19 deaths.

De Villiers said, in general, there are now “less people with multiple co-morbidities who end up getting COVID.”

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He continued, saying “sometimes COVID is the last straw that kind of pushes them over the edge. Sometimes they get asymptomatic COVID, and we’ve seen quite a few of those as well.

“They get an asymptomatic COVID infection and it’s just an incidental finding a few days or a week before they pass away. Some do get COVID and they get actual symptoms as well.”

Also Friday, the B.C. Centre for Disease Control reported 33 new cases for Interior Health, along with 467 active cases, including 11 people in critical care. The death total is 145.

The new cases pushed the region’s total to 11,622 since the pandemic began, with 11,010 having recovered.

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