Cassellholme long term care home has confirmed it is closing its doors to visitors due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.
"Casselholme has been monitoring the coronavirus outbreak, COVID-19 regionally and globally," a Cassellholme release stated Thursday morning.
"Due to the rapidly evolving transmission of COVID-19, Dr. Jim Chirico, Medical Officer of Health, has directed that all Long Term Care Homes be closed to visitors until further notice. As such, Cassellholme will be closed to the public as of 4 pm., Thursday, March 12, 2020."
Cassellholme notes there will be exceptional circumstances under which visitors will be permitted and these situations will be identified by their Clinical Services team.
"The Home is taking additional proactive measures to suspend the use of private care workers that attend the Home and understands that this decision will create concerns for families. To mitigate these concerns, we will increase our daily staffing compliments to ensure care levels are maintained and/or enhanced during this period.
"We believe the risk of not taking action is of greater concern to our residents and community. Cassellholme will continue to align recommendations with and follow guidelines from the local, provincial and federal health authorities."
For more information on COVID-19 locally, you can go to the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit website
According to the province, there are now 54 confirmed cases in Ontario with 536 under investigation. The North Bay Regional Health Centre told BayToday they do not have any confirmed cases at the hospital locally.
The Health Unit followed up on that.
"To date, the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit’s region has had zero positive cases of COVID-19 and the risk in our district remains low," stated Alex McDermid, public relations specialist, North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit.
"The Health Unit is working with community stakeholders, such as hospitals, health care providers and municipalities, to ensure that preparations are made in case the risk assessment changes."
The Health Unit sent out a release today relating to all the Long Term Care homes in the area.
"People of all ages can be affected by COVID-19, however, older people and people with pre-existing medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, and heart disease are more likely to become severely ill," the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit stated.
"As a precaution, the Health Unit has asked all long-term care homes in our district to restrict visitor access to only compassionate care visitors. The Health Unit also recommends that individuals monitor their own health before visiting older family members, and do not visit if they are feeling unwell. The Health Unit encourages family members to help their older relatives stock up on essentials, such as medications, canned and frozen food, etc., and to make a plan should anyone become ill."