Windsor

Management at Windsor LTC home in major COVID-19 outbreak filling in as PSWs

A Windsor long-term care home experiencing the region's largest COVID-19 outbreak has pulled in staff and volunteers from across the public health care system to upkeep its operations and care of residents.

The home says Red Cross was on-site to see how it can help

The Village at St. Clair, a long-term care home in Windsor, is one of several long-term care and retirement homes in outbreak, though it has the most number of cases as of Tuesday. (Jacob Barker/CBC)

A Windsor long-term care home experiencing the region's largest COVID-19 outbreak has pulled in staff and volunteers from across the public health care system to keep up its operations and care of residents.

The home says management has even stepped in as personal support workers. 

As of Tuesday, The Village at St. Clair had 147 COVID-19 cases — 97 residents and 50 staff, according to the local health unit. According to provincial data, eight residents have died. 

With that number of staff off sick, the home said in an emailed statement to CBC News Tuesday evening that it is short a number of staff, but outlined the ways it is addressing that shortage. 

According to the home, the following staffing efforts have been made: 

  • Eight members from the support office team are on-site, including registered clinicians. 
  • More than 12 team members from six other Villages homes have volunteered to stay in Windsor, including registered clinicians. 
  • Eight resolved team members have returned to work. 
  • Nine team members have joined from Hotel Dieu Grace Healthcare Hospital. 
  • 11 staff from an environmental agency are on-site to perform cleaning of high touch surfaces, assist with providing food and drink to residents. 
  • Five staff have joined from Home and Community Care at the local health integration network. 
  • They are working with more than 10 staffing agency organizations to find a reliable source of temporary team members. 
  • 25 volunteers and essential caregivers are on-site to provide food and drink to residents. 
  • More than 12 support office staff are working on recruiting, administration and communications
'We are strong' posted in the windows at The Village at St. Clair long-term care home as the facility continues to see a major spread of COVID-19. (Darrin Di Carlo/CBC)

Red Cross on site 

In its statement, the home also said that Red Cross was on-site Tuesday to "see how they can help us." 

This news follows a letter sent out Tuesday by Unifor's national president Jerry Dias, whose union represents workers in the home. 

Dias called upon the Ontario government to take control of the home and send in the military or Red Cross, as he said staffing in the home was "below crisis" levels.  

In a statement to CBC News Tuesday, the Ministry of Long-Term Care said that it conducted an on-site inspection of the home on Tuesday, but did not offer any information on what it found. It continued to say that decisions around increased management support are assessed on a case-by-case basis. 

It did not say it is providing additional staff to the home and noted that the home said its staffing is "stable."

The home ended its statement by saying it understands there are many homes in outbreak in Windsor-Essex, but that any support at this time is welcomed. 

"This is a challenging time, especially because there are many other homes with outbreaks in Windsor-Essex who are also looking for support and resources, and anyone who is able to contribute would be greatly appreciated," reads the statement. 

Thirteen other seniors' homes in Windsor-Essex are in outbreak. 

About the Author

Jennifer La Grassa

Reporter/Editor

Jennifer La Grassa is a reporter/editor for CBC Windsor. Email: jennifer.lagrassa@cbc.ca

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