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Order issued to Newmarket's Southlake Village for 'inadequate' staffing, COVID-19 infection control

The Newmarket long-term care facility has been battling its fourth outbreak of the pandemic since March 7
USED 2019 1213 Sunny Hill park DK
Southlake Residential Care Village. File photo/NewmarketToday

York Region's medical officer of health issued an order today to Southlake Residential Care Village compelling it to increase measures to battle its fourth COVID-19 outbreak of the pandemic.

Dr. Karim Kurji issued a section 29.2 order under the Health Protection and Promotion Act to the Newmarket long-term facility's operator, Extendicare, due to "inadequate staffing levels and insufficient infection, prevention and control practices" during the outbreak declared nine days ago that is linked to one resident death, two resident cases and 10 health-care worker cases, said Patrick Casey, director of corporate communications for York Region. 

When the outbreak was declared on March 7 by the public health unit, there were two staff cases.

Under the provincial act, medical officers of health have the power to issue orders to require a long-term care or retirement home to take any actions required to monitor, investigate and respond to an outbreak of communicable disease at the home, Casey added.

While the order is in effect, the management at the long-term care home must: 

  • Comply with all direction related to the COVID-19 outbreak;
  • Ensure equipment, supplies, services or associated tools required to monitor, respond and control the outbreak are acquired and disseminated to staff and residents;
  • Ensure the institution has sufficient staffing to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak;
  • Ensure staff and all essential visitors are trained on point-of-care risk assessment and the appropriate use of PPE equipment;
  • Ensure that the release of health information to any person or entity shall comply with the Health Protection and Promotion Act and the Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004 and all applicable privacy laws.

NewmarketToday has not received a response for a request for comment from Southlake Village at the time of publication.