Fight to stop license renewal for Pickering’s Orchard Villa LTC now in second day

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Published July 15, 2021 at 5:44 pm

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Protests at Pickering’s Orchard Villa Long-Term Care Home are into their second day as crowds of people loudly call for the Province to deny the home its requested 30-year license renewal.

Seventy-one people died in the home during the first outbreak of the Covid-19 virus last spring, which lasted from March 31 to June 11, prompting the Canadian military to step in.

A subsequent damning report, authored by Lt-Col George Taylor, cited a laundry list of “serious” infractions at the facility, including a lack of knowledge among staff of PPE protocols, “poor palliative care standards,” poor cleanliness standards with cockroaches and flies present and a “general fear” of using supplies because of cost.

The report also claimed staff were re-using catheters after sterility had “obviously been compromised” and using expired medication. Aggressive behaviour towards patients was also observed.

Lakeridge Health issued a statement after the release of the report, saying they took “immediate actions’ to manage the outbreak, along with “ongoing staff education and training on the use of PPE.”

“Together, we have made strides at process improvement, education and re-education to manage the outbreak and put the supports in place to provide the best possible care to residents,” the statement concluded.

Premier Doug Ford called the allegations contained in the military report “horrific,” and warned that he wouldn’t hesitate to shut down poorly performing Long-Term Care homes.

A few months later his government approved an 87-bed expansion at Orchard Villa.

Many of the protesters on hand at the Valley Farm Road facility lost family members in the outbreak.

Photo by Frank Gunn, Canadian Press

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