Are we doing enough to prevent the spread of the coronavirus Covid-19 to and in personal care homes and to northern Manitoba?
Today, I spoke on a Member's Statement about actions which are needed to reduce the spread of the coronavirus Covid-19. My comments are below:
Coronavirus Covid-19 concerns
Madame Speaker, There has been outbreak of the coronavirus Covid-19 in a nursing home, the Lynn Valley Care Centre, in B.C. One resident has died.
The mortality rate for those over 80 years old is high, and residents of personal care homes who have chronic health conditions are particularly vulnerable.
We need to take great care of people in personal care homes in our province, especially given the problematic circumstance in B.C. where a shortage of staff has created a very difficult situation. I suggest it is time to screen all workers going into personal care homes and all visitors to personal care homes for symptoms of a Covid-19 infection to limit the chance of the virus getting into a personal care home. I believe it is also important to set up and begin using video links between residents in care homes and their family and friends. Such video links are vital to maintain contact even when individuals are quarantined. While MLAs can easily use facetime on smart phones, many residents in personal care homes do not have these devices. My experience is that getting video links between a resident and a family member outside the home can be difficult. We need to make sure this is easily possible. Keeping in touch with family and friends is very important at a time like this. I hope we will soon have an announcement from the Minister of measures he is taking in these areas.
I am also waiting for an announcement from the Minister of steps that will be taken, in consultation with First Nation and Metis leaders, to protect communities in northern Manitoba, and in Winnipeg to protect vulnerable populations – as occur at Siloam Mission and the Main Street Project.
Overall, as this graph I table illustrates, we need to slow down the virus spread so it does not overwhelm our resources.
Thank you to Ken Metcalf for sending me this graph.