Negative Covid tests at Christchurch rest homes

Photo: File
Photo: File
The Covid-19 tests from two Christchurch rest homes that went into lockdown on Tuesday night have come back negative.

The Canterbury District Health Board said all of the test results to date have returned negative results.

Brookhaven Retirement Village in Woolston and Village Palms Retirement Community in Shirley went into lockdown on Tuesday.

Brookhaven reportedly tested eight of its residents and put them in isolation after they displayed flu-like symptoms.

Village Palms advised family members it was in lockdown after residents began displaying symptoms of a respiratory illness.

Medical Officer of Health Dr Cheryl Brunton said there are many different flu-like respiratory illnesses circulating at this time of year.

"These rest homes are to be commended for proactively taking steps to protect their residents and staff.  Many residents have been swabbed and to date all test results have returned negative for COVID-19. At this time of year there are many different flu-like respiratory illnesses circulating and we expect this will continue into early spring as it does most years," Brunton said.

"When an Aged Residential Care facility has a resident or a group of residents who are unwell restricting visitors and isolating the resident/s is the most appropriate course of action. This is not new – taking a precautionary approach and keeping residents separate from each other and asking visitors to stay away is one of the most important actions ARC facilities can take to reduce the spread of infectious diseases. This protects other residents and staff.

"Isolation is the correct protocol for any infectious disease including norovirus (a vomiting and diarrhoea illness), influenza or other respiratory infections – including COVID-19, along with increasing the level of PPE used by staff, stringent attention to hand hygiene, and scrupulous cleaning of high touch point areas (such as door handles, keyboards, phones etc).

"We have good systems in place to support our response to outbreaks of any infectious diseases. Canterbury DHB’s Infection, Prevention and Control team along with Community & Public Health work collaboratively with Aged Residential Care providers to provide specialist advice when required."



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