Outbreak at Heritage House Declared Over

Friday, February 19 – Thanks to exceptional teamwork, the COVID-19 outbreak at Heritage House and the management order that designated Guelph General Hospital (GGH) to manage the home are both over.

The outbreak was declared by Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph (WDG) Public Health on January 21, with a total of four residents and one staff testing positive. Subsequently, based on a management order by the Retirement Home Regulatory Authority, GGH took over management of Heritage House on January 24.

Melissa Skinner, GGH VP Patient Services, spent the past three weeks at Heritage House, working with their team, other GGH staff and WDG Public Health to keep residents and staff safe. Marianne Walker, GGH’s President and CEO notes “It is a testament to that teamwork that the outbreak was stopped in its tracks, with no further cases.”

“These types of outbreaks can pose significant challenges and create risk for those living and working in our long-term care and retirement homes.” said Dr. Matthew Tenenbaum, Associate Medical Officer of Health for WDG Public Health. “I’m grateful for the collaboration and dedication of families, staff and the team at Guelph General Hospital for everything that was done to manage this outbreak and bring it under control.”

Melissa Skinner noted “The Heritage House staff are a group of dedicated and caring individuals who were eager to work with GGH. Their commitment to keeping their residents and colleagues safe and providing compassionate care was commendable.” 

Heritage House now has all the tools and processes in place to prevent a future outbreak of COVID-19. The partners will continue to work with Heritage House to ensure IPAC (infection prevention and control) measures remain strong and that directions from Public Health remain in place.

WDG Public Health will continue to conduct regular follow-ups with Heritage House, and GGH will be an ongoing resource for their team.

Since the pandemic started, our Guelph and Area Ontario Health Team continues to support our Retirement Homes, Long Term Care home and congregate settings. Supporting one another is truly what it means to work as an Ontario Health Team.