COVID-19 outbreak that killed 2 at Kelowna retirement home has ended, Interior Health says
VANCOUVER -- A COVID-19 outbreak that killed two residents of a retirement home in B.C.'s Interior is now over, according to the local health authority.
Interior Health announced the end of the outbreak at Sandalwood Retirement Resort in Kelowna on Saturday.
“I want to thank the staff and community for their dedication during this outbreak.” said Susan Brown, Interior Health's president and CEO, in a news release.
“On behalf of Interior Health, I extend our condolences to the family of the two residents who passed away during the outbreak.”
The outbreak was declared on April 22 after 11 residents and one staff member at the independent living facility tested positive for the coronavirus.
In all, 28 cases of COVID-19 were linked to the outbreak. That total includes 26 residents and two staff members.
The end of the Sandalwood outbreak means there are a total of two active outbreaks in B.C. seniors homes.
Both of those outbreaks are also located in the Interior Health region.
The one declared at Orchard Haven in Keremeos on April 24 has just two cases associated with it: one staff member and one resident.
The other ongoing outbreak is at Spring Valley Care Centre in Kelowna and was declared on April 26. That outbreak had a total of 38 cases associated with it as of Friday, and six people had died.
Twenty-six of those infected at Spring Valley are residents, while 12 are staff members or others, according to Interior Health.
Data released by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control in mid-February indicated that 83 per cent of residents at Spring Valley had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Orchard Haven had a partial vaccination rate of 85 per cent, according to the BCCDC data.
Across the entire Interior Health region, 89 per cent of long-term care residents were at least partially vaccinated as of Feb. 15.
Immunization data for Sandalwood was not released in February because it is an independent-living facility, rather than long-term care or assisted living.
“Even though we had cases, this outbreak still shows that immunization is working,” said Dr. Albert de Villiers, Interior Health's chief medical health officer, in the news release announcing the end of the outbreak at Sandalwood.
Earlier this week, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said 98 per cent of all cases in B.C. between late December and May 1 have been found in people who were either unvaccinated or had received a first dose less than 21 days prior to developing symptoms.
Of the 1,450 people who caught the coronavirus more than 21 days after receiving their first dose, seniors tended to suffer the worst outcomes, Henry said.