COVID-19 outbreaks identified at two Fairhaven nursing homes

FAIRHAVEN, Mass. (WLNE) – Health department officials in Fairhaven have identified coronavirus outbreaks at two nursing facilities in town.

More than 30 cases of COVID-19 have been reported at Alden Court Nursing Care & Rehabilitation Center in recent weeks, and as of Wednesday, more than 5 cases have been identified at a second nursing home in Fairhaven.

“We know that we have a cluster currently at the Alden Court nursing home. That cluster there consists of 30 plus cases,” said Geoffrey Haworth, a member of the Fairhaven Board of Health. “There is a small cluster that is developing in another nursing home in town, and we are currently following that to see what comes of that.”

In a two-week span, the town of Fairhaven had 75 new coronavirus cases according to the Massachusetts Department of Health data published on November 4.

Most of them were traced back to Alden Court.

“The majority of the cases are resulting from those clusters,” Haworth said. “If you look at the numbers in the town, which fluctuate week to week, in most cases, our 50%+ numbers are just in the clusters.”

Haworth said both residents and staff tested positive for COVID-19 at Alden Court. He said the outbreak started in mid-October.

“You have these nursing homes and other establishments that are very close quarters and a lot of people living together and a lot of coming and going of the staff. So, all it takes is one person and it just easily spreads throughout the building.”

At the start of the pandemic in the spring, two Alden Court residents died from coronavirus after an outbreak. Haworth couldn’t say whether anyone has died from this latest outbreak.

Brad Truini, Executive Director of Alden Court, sent ABC6 the following statement:

“Despite taking aggressive precautions, including regular testing, quarantining, infection control and use of personal protective equipment, Alden Court has seen an uptick of positive cases among both staff and residents.  These cases were isolated to a single long-term care unit; to date, nearly half of the cases are considered recovered.

Our clinical team is maintaining close contact with the state Department of Public Health and I am confident we are taking all steps necessary to support the health of our COVID-19 positive residents and limit risk of spread to other residents.

I want to express my particular thanks to the staff at Alden Court for their outstanding efforts to assure effective infection control.  We appreciate the continued support and understanding of our residents and their families, who know we are doing everything possible to maintain a safe environment.”

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Categories: Coronavirus, Massachusetts, News, Regional News