A woman in her 90s living in a Kitchener long-term care home has died from COVID-19, marking the first related death in a fully immunized person in Waterloo Region.
On Sunday, health officials said the Village of Winston Park long-term care home is currently going through a COVID-19 outbreak.
There are nine COVID-19 cases at the home, including five residents and four staff members infected with the virus.
“I would like to express my deepest sympathy to this individual’s family at this sad time,” said Dr. Rabia Bana, Associate Medical Officer of Health for the Region of Waterloo in a news release. “Death is a very rare outcome in fully immunized individuals.”
Dr. Bana adds that there are usually a lot of other factors at play when it comes to these kinds of death, like age, baseline health status, and comorbidities.
In an online update on Friday from Schlegel Villages, which runs a number of retirement and long-term care homes, they said a resident of Winston Park who had tested positive for COVID-19 passed away.
“This resident had only shown mild symptoms but, as we have seen through the course of the pandemic, the virus can change quickly and our deepest condolences are with loved ones and team members facing this loss today,” the statement reads in part.
On Monday, the home’s general manager, Brad Lawrence, said 98 per cent of residents have received their second dose and 89 per cent of staff have received a second dose.
Public health said Monday they suspect all the COVID-19 cases at the home are the Delta variant.
“We know that one of the cases [in the outbreak] is a Delta variant case, so we expect that the remaining and any additional cases would also be Delta variant,” said Dr. Bana.
They add that Waterloo Region residents should remain vigilant in the fight against COVID-19.
“Members of the public need to continue to follow public health guidance and get immunized as soon as possible,” Dr. Bana said. “Vaccines along with public health measures are still our best protection against COVID-19 and the Delta variant which is circulating in our community.”
Public Health says they are currently working with the LTC facility to manage the outbreak, as residents of these homes are more vulnerable to severe outcomes of COVID-19.