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Home » WRHA PCH COVID-19 Status Updates » WRHA PCH COVID-19 Status Update

WRHA PCH COVID-19 Status Update

December 18, 2020

The WRHA’s long-term care program funds and oversees the operations of 39 long-term care facilities, including 38 personal care homes (PCHs) and the St. Amant health care facility, in the Winnipeg health region.

The WRHA has implemented and is managing a comprehensive system-wide approach to protect and care for residents and staff at Winnipeg PCH facilities with COVID-19 outbreaks. This involves careful, fluid coordination with WRHA clinical management, PCH management and staff, regional programs, and partners such as the Canadian Red Cross.

*Please note new updates will be published to this page twice weekly.

Current status:

As of 9 am, Dec. 18, there were active COVID-19 outbreaks at 27 of Winnipeg’s 39 long-term care facilities.

We are pleased to advise the COVID-19 outbreaks at the following five Winnipeg facilities have been declared over as of today, Dec. 18:

  • Riverview Health Centre
  • Concordia Place
  • Pembina Place
  • Southeast PCH
  • Actionmarguerite St. Vital

An outbreak is declared following the identification of one positive case in either a resident, a staff member or an external service provider (example: Agency staff).

Of the 27 facilities with current outbreaks, 15 had zero active resident cases as of 9 am, Dec. 18.

Larger-scale outbreaks are currently being experienced at:

  • Charleswood Care Centre
  • Convalescent Home of Winnipeg
  • Fred Douglas Lodge
  • Holy Family Home
  • Oakview Place
  • Park Manor Care
  • Poseidon Care Centre

For a complete list of facilities with active COVID-19 outbreaks, please scroll to the bottom of this post.

A message to our staff, residents, PCH partners, and our community:

The staff, managers, facility operators, and leadership in our long-term-care sector grieve deeply and sincerely for the loss of PCH residents who contracted the virus, and as fellow citizens of Winnipeg we share in the pain experienced by so many families in our community.

Staff, including redeployed staff, at Winnipeg PCHs continue every day to step up and tirelessly ensure the care and safety of residents, despite the unprecedented and difficult situation. They are tired and they are worried, yet they persevere, and we would like to extend our sincere gratitude for their efforts.

Managers in Winnipeg’s personal care homes and long-term-care facilities, and the leadership of our long-term-care program, continue every day to consider best practices and implement measures according to clinical experts and established protocols. We will employ every feasible tool at our disposal to ensure outbreaks can be mitigated and controlled to the best of everyone’s ability.

Measures underway:


As of Dec. 18, there are 126 PCH staff from the Winnipeg region who are actively COVID-positive. A further 303 have been declared recovered. Many more are ill, awaiting test results or isolating at home along with a family member and are unable to come to work. Staffing needs at PCHs can therefore change quickly day-to-day, and even shift-to-shift.

Although overall staffing is still challenging, the majority of facilities report that their staffing appears stable going into this weekend. Any sites looking for assistance in filling shifts are working through the central staffing office to fill shifts.            

WRHA continues to activate the hub model of attaching PCHs to hospitals and community areas for the sharing of staff resources. Urgent and emergent PCH staffing needs continue to be filled with redeployed resources available from our Community Health Services areas and the acute-care facilities. Over the past several weeks, nearly 900 shifts at Winnipeg PCHs have been filled in this manner.

The WRHA long-term care program and PCHs have developed a number of tools and best practices to assist with the orientation of nursing and HCA staff who are being redeployed to work in PCHs from other sectors:

  • Education Forum: On Dec. 17, more than 100 staff took part in an online education forum  A day in the life at a PCH, to answer some of their questions on processes in a LTC facility that may be new to those not in that sector. The presentation was recorded for future staff to watch prior to their first shift.
  • Mentor Connection: The opportunity has been developed for redeployed staff new to LTC to connect with a Community Mentor/Support, who can help provide support to new staff working in the PCH environment. Arrangements can also be made for new recruits to request a “buddy shift,” to experience the environment prior to their first redeployed shift.
  • Infection Prevention and Control: Representatives from IP&C are available to new staff to answer questions and provide advice regarding the use of personal protective equipment in the long-term care environment.

The PRRT continues to review and process applications for uncertified Health Care Aides – both those enrolled in the new Red River College (RRC) training program, and those not requiring training (e.g. those who are internationally trained or students in health sciences faculties). The majority of students from the first cohort of the course have been deployed, and final assessments are being done for the second cohort.

On-site supports to PCHs and resident care:

WRHA clinical leads are currently providing support to the following Winnipeg PCHs: Golden Links Lodge, Maples PCH, St. Norbert PCH, Holy Family Home, Simkin Centre, Fred Douglas Lodge, Park Manor Care Centre, Oakview Place, Convalescent Home of Winnipeg, Charleswood Care Centre, West Park Manor and Poseidon Care Centre.

These site leads are working with the management of each of these facilities to provide oversight and guidance on resident/ clinical care aspects, staffing resources, infection prevention and control practices, and family communication.

Public health officials are introducing rapid testing for asymptomatic personal care home staff working in three licensed personal care homes across the province as part of a pilot project around testing in long-term care facilities.

This pilot project will expand the asymptomatic testing that is already underway in personal care homes by testing staff who do not have any symptoms. It is the first step in plans for an expansion of this work to other sites in the weeks ahead.

Asymptomatic testing is a tool already used in personal care homes that have confirmed cases and/or outbreaks of COVID-19. When a positive case of COVID-19 is identified, all residents and staff who are identified as contacts are tested, whether or not they have symptoms.

The pilot will implement broader asymptomatic surveillance testing (testing where there are no symptoms and no known exposure) for staff working in the selected facilities. Staff will be asked to participate on a voluntary basis, with testing performed once a week.

The pilot project will use Abbott Panbio COVID-19 rapid antigen test, which provides a result in approximately 20 minutes. Staff at the participating sites will be trained to perform the test using the equipment. Results received as positive will be reported to public health as probable cases and will be confirmed by a lab-based test.

The three sites chosen for the pilot project are Donwood Manor and Deer Lodge Centre in Winnipeg, as well as Country Meadows Personal Care Home in Neepawa.

Testing is expected to begin on Dec. 21 and will be conducted for four weeks at each site.

The Canadian Red Cross continues to provide infection prevention and control assessments and guidance to PCHs. Red Cross personnel are currently providing onsite support at Golden Links Lodge, Holy Family Home and, as of Dec. 18, Charleswood Care Centre. The Red Cross deployment at St. Norbert PCH concluded on Dec. 14.

We are grateful to the Canadian Red Cross for the support they have provided over the past several weeks, and for the support they continue to provide.

PCHs continue to access the WRHA community intravenous (CIVP) team, palliative care team, regional infection prevention and control staff, and respiratory therapy specialists to support COVID-19 residents with higher care needs. Over the past few weeks, the CIVP team has provided hydration to more than 375 residents at 15 Winnipeg PCHs.

Regular physician coverage and medical monitoring of residents continues to be provided onsite and virtually at the priority sites.

N95 fit-testing within licensed Personal Care Homes and Long-Term Care (LTC) facilities continues.

Facility-specific information:

Current priority sites include Park Manor Care Home, Charleswood Care Centre, Convalescent Home of Winnipeg, Holy Family Home, Fred Douglas Lodge and Oakview Place.

The WRHA is also closely working with, and monitoring the situation at, Poseidon Care Centre and West Park Manor.

PCHs continue to make progress on implementing IP&C recommendations from the Canadian Red Cross and other action items identified by WRHA clinical site leads.

Management and Oversight

Daily situational update calls with the management teams of all PCHs and the WRHA long-term care program have been established to share information, progress and challenges in real-time.

The WRHA clinical leads providing oversight at PCHs in greatest need have daily status updates with WRHA leadership, to ensure resources are proactively directed to areas of greatest need. These clinical leads will be rotated to other sites or provide support to a cluster of sites, as needed and as the outbreak situation across WRHA PCH sites evolves.

Winnipeg PCHs currently experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks (as of Dec 18, 2020)

  • Actionmarguerite St Boniface
  • Actionmarguerite St Joseph
  • Beacon Hill Lodge
  • Bethania PCH
  • Charleswood Care Centre
  • Convalescent Home of Winnipeg
  • Deer Lodge Centre (LTC)
  • Fred Douglas Lodge
  • Golden Links Lodge
  • Heritage Lodge
  • Holy Family Home
  • Kildonan PCH
  • Lions Personal Care Centre (Sherbrook Street location)
  • Maples PCH
  • Middlechurch Home
  • Misericordia Place PCH
  • Oakview Place
  • Park Manor Care
  • Parkview Place
  • Poseidon Care Centre
  • River East
  • River Park Gardens
  • Simkin Centre
  • St Amant (LTC)
  • St Norbert PCH
  • Tuxedo Villa
  • West Park Manor

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