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COVID-19 case detected at Ontario group home that weathered deadly outbreak

MARKHAM, Ont. — Another case of COVID-19 has been detected at an Ontario group home for disabled adults that was the site of a deadly outbreak this spring.

York Region Public Health has declared a second COVID-19 outbreak at Participation House in Markham beginning on Tuesday, noting on its website that a caregiver has tested positive for the virus.

Forty of 42 residents tested positive for COVID-19 in an outbreak that began in April and 57 caregivers also tested positive, according to the health agency.

The health agency says six residents died from COVID-19 in the first outbreak that lasted nearly two months.

Shelley Brillinger, executive director at Participation House, said Saturday that the staff member who tested positive does not directly work with residents at the home.

They tested positive after becoming symptomatic and are currently isolating at home, Brillinger said.

She said other employees who worked directly with the infected person were tested and the test results had all come back negative as of Saturday.

“Although we remain hopeful that this is an isolated case, full outbreak protocols are in place, with our priority being the ongoing health and well-being of our residents and staff,” Brillinger said in a written statement.

She said the home is corresponding with public health officials daily about measures to prevent further infection.

The home faced staffing shortages during the first outbreak, as people stayed home to avoid spreading the virus further.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 12, 2020.

The Canadian Press


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