27 Mar 2020

Napier rest home puts residents in isolation due to probable coronavirus case

1:32 pm on 27 March 2020

Fourteen dementia residents in a Hawke's Bay rest home have been placed in isolation after one of them is being considered a probable case of Covid-19.

Elderly woman's hands, care for the elderly concept

Photo: 123rf.com

The result of the test on resident at Gladys Mary Rest Home in Napier is due today.

Hawke's Bay District Health Board revealed that a person who tested positive for Covid-19 visited the rest home while symptomatic between 17 and 20 March.

That person had a connection to the cruise ship Ruby Princess, which docked in Napier on 15 March.

The person also visited five shops and a winery between 18 and 19 March.

They were:

  • Hohepa, Clive, 18 March
  • Harvey Norman, Hastings, 19 March 10am
  • Cornocopia, Hastings
  • Weleda, Havelock North, 19 March
  • Te Mata Bakery, 19 March
  • Mission Winery, 19 March

Bupa, which owns the rest home, said the affected resident was a member of a 14-person community who live in close proximity.

"To ensure the safety of our residents and staff, the 14-person community has been placed into immediate isolation.

"Additional infection prevention control measures were immediately put in place, including additional restrictions, equipment and hygiene measures. For additional safety, we are treating the situation as an infection outbreak area.

"We've been in contact with impacted residents' families to offer our support and provide reassurance of how we are continuing to care for their family members. We know that this will be a difficult time for the families, as well as our residents and our team."

  • If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, call the NZ Covid-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 (+64 9 358 5453 for international SIMs) or call your GP - don't show up at a medical centre

All staff who had close contact with the resident had been asked to go into self-isolation for 14 days but anyone who had casual contact was allowed by Public Health to continue working, Bupa said in a statement.

"Our team will be using Personal Protective Equipment, including gowns, masks and gloves where required."

The Gladys Mary Rest Home has been shut to all visitors since Tuesday 24 March.

Dr Eyre said while the chance of infection being passed on while the person was visiting shops and wineries was low, anyone with symptoms of Covid-19 should call their GP.

Close contacts from these locations would already have or will shortly be contacted by members of the Public Health team or National Contact Tracing Service, if there was a greater risk of infection. Now everyone was in isolation, it would help prevent wider spread, Dr Eyre said.

In relation to The Gladys Mary Care Home the Public Health and infection prevention teams were working closely with the staff and all close contacts have been identified.