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Councillor calls on province to bring in new management at Carlingview Manor; province monitoring
OTTAWA -- An Ottawa city councillor is calling on the Ontario government to bring in new management at one of the city's long-term care homes, hit hard by COVID-19, but the province says it has no plan to do so at this time.
Carlingview Manor, currently operated by Revera, has seen 164 residents and 87 staff members of the 303-bed facility contract COVID-19. Fifty-six residents have died, as of May 30.
No other home in Ottawa comes close in terms of the number of cases.
Coun. Theresa Kavanagh, in whose Bay Ward Carlingview Manor is found, told CTV News at Six on Sunday she wants to see the Ontario government come in, as they have done for some homes in the GTA.
"Where on Earth would you let fifty-three people die in a building and not do something?" She said. "This is not a time for Band-Aids. This is a time for overhaul."
Last week, the province announced it was issuing mandatory management orders at five long-term care homes following a scathing military report that outlined deplorable conditions. Some of the most starting allegations included bug infestations, incidents of force feeding leading to "audible choking," and patients who were heard “crying for help with staff not responding.”
"We've already taken over two homes because we had concerns and now we are moving to take over these five homes because in the face of those accusations, in the face of these problems, we will use every tool at our disposal,” Ford told reporters on Wednesday afternoon.
Kavanagh would like to see that extended to Carlingview Manor in Ottawa.
"I understand with 250 cases, obviously they were short-staffed, but families need to have answers and they aren't getting them. This is just deplorable. It needs to change," Kavanagh told CTV Ottawa's Stefan Keyes.
In an email to CTV News Ottawa, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Long-term Care said there is no plan currently to issue a similar management order at Carlingview Manor right now, but the ministry is keeping a close watch on it.
"Decisions regarding when and where to put additional management support continue to be made on a case-by-case basis by the ministry in consultation with Ontario Health. We continue to monitor Carlingview Manor’s needs constantly," the statement said.
The ministry said inspectors had recently visited Carlingview Manor on May 29, and earlier on May 21 and that the home does not report a shortage of PPE at this time.
"Beyond inspections, Ministry of Long-Term Care inspectors and a designated Ministry of Long-Term Care point person have been in regular contact with the home. We are working actively to support Carlingview Manor’s needs related to staff capacity, outbreak status, personal protective equipment supply, and other critical needs, and to prevent and contain further infection."
The Queensway Carleton Hospital was providing support to staff at Carlingview Manor, but the province said many staffers who were off sick has since returned.
"We can confirm that Queensway Carleton Hospital, in collaboration with Ontario Health, has been providing support at Carlingview," the ministry said. "While this previously included staffing, the home no longer requires HR support due to the return of many staff."
Revera operates three long-term care homes in Ottawa: Carlingview Manor, Montfort Long-term Care Centre, and Longfields Manor. Of those, only Longfields has not experienced an outbreak of COVID-19. Montfort Long-term Care Centre has seen 116 total cases of COVID-19, including 30 resident deaths.
Kavanagh blamed the issues at Carlingview Manor on the for-profit nature of the home.
"I think there's a real problem in terms of management. This is a place that is for-profit and that's what it's designed for. Unfortunately, the victims of this are the residents and the staff to a great extent as well. I'm not blaming the staff. They're doing the best they can. The whole reason for this situation is because they were understaffed in the first place."
"What has occurred at Carlingview Manor is tragic," the ministry's statement said. "We send our deepest condolences to everyone affected – residents, their families, and staff, and we want to thank every front-line health care worker and staff member at the home for their ongoing dedication and support during this unprecedented time."
CTV News has reached out to Revera for comment.