Worker at Orléans care home dies from COVID-19 | CBC News

Worker at Orléans care home dies from COVID-19 | CBC News

A long-time personal support worker at one of Ottawa’s hardest-hit long-term care homes has died of COVID-19, officials there say.

A message thanking health-care workers is seen beside a statue of Mary outside the Madonna Care Community in Ottawa. The long-term care home announced Thursday one of its workers had died from COVID-19. (Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

A longtime personal support worker at one of Ottawa’s hardest-hit long-term care homes has died of COVID-19, officials there say.

At least 29 residents have died at the Madonna Care Community in Orléans since the start of the outbreak, but neither it nor any other homes in Ottawa had reported a staff member dying of the respiratory illness until now.

“He was a loved and respected team member and will be missed by his colleagues and the residents he cared for,” the home said in a statement Thursday.  

“Our dedicated team is working tirelessly to bring care, comfort and support to the residents we serve. The loss of a colleague is truly heartbreaking during an already difficult time.” 

‘We need a plan’

The worker’s death is “certainly a tragic situation” for the care home, said Stephen Blais, the MPP for Orléans.

Sienna, the home’s owner, has sent extra managers to the facility to better understand what’s happening and implement measures to improve the situation, Blais told Radio-Canada.

“We think it’s very important that they and the government explain how they’re going to improve this situation, and how they can get a handle on what’s going on there,” he said.

“We need a plan to deal with the emergency today, but it needs to be long-lasting. Because this isn’t going to go away any time soon.”

2 new deaths citywide

The total number of deaths linked to COVID-19 in the nation’s capital currently sits at 141, according to the latest numbers released Thursday afternoon by Ottawa Public Health (OPH).

Health officials announced 21 new cases Thursday, along with two more deaths.

In all, there have been 1,579 laboratory-confirmed cases, OPH said, with ongoing outbreaks in 24 institutions.

Public health officials have said there are likely many more undiagnosed cases in the community.

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