Norovirus closes Macaulay Lodge

For the past week, Macaulay Lodge has been closed to the public. An outbreak of norovirus has infected 19 residents and 12 staff, Health spokesperson Pat Living said on Friday.

For the past week, Macaulay Lodge has been closed to the public.

An outbreak of norovirus has infected 19 residents and 12 staff, Health spokesperson Pat Living said on Friday.

To protect residents, staff, and the general public, it’s standard procedure to close residential continuing care facilities in the case of an outbreak, she said.

Family is still allowed in to visit residents in palliative care.

“Generally with an outbreak about 50 per cent of the residents become ill,” said Living.

“And we’re not quite there yet.”

Macaulay Lodge houses 46 residents and 50 staff.

The virus has already peaked, said Living.

“It has slowed down to one or two new cases a day.”

After a 48-hour period with no new cases, Macaulay Lodge will reopen to the public.

“Things looked good, and we thought we’d be in a position to reopen today, but there were a couple of new cases yesterday,” she said.

It’s been two to three years since a residential-care facility in the territory has been forced to close its doors.

“It’s not unheard of, but it’s not a regular occurrence,” said Living.

Fortunately, there have been no recent cases in Copper Ridge Place, she added.

Infected residents at Macaulay Lodge are confined to their rooms and group activities have been reduced to help combat the virus.

“Of the 19 who were sick, 12 have recovered nicely,” said Living.

Norovirus, also known as Norwalk virus, is a gastrointestinal illness transmitted by faecally contaminated food or water, and by person-to-person contact.

Most outbreaks are traced to food that was handled by one infected person. (Genesee Keevil)