COVID-19 outbreak at Prince Rupert care home where 16 died earlier this year

·2 min read
Charlotte Rowse, 96, reviews information on the COVID-19 vaccine at a Prince Rupert. B.C., immunization clinic in March. (CBC - image credit)
Charlotte Rowse, 96, reviews information on the COVID-19 vaccine at a Prince Rupert. B.C., immunization clinic in March. (CBC - image credit)

Just weeks after a deadly COVID-19 outbreak ended at a care home on British Columbia's North Coast, health officials have reported a new outbreak at the same facility.

Northern Health says two residents at Acropolis Manor in Prince Rupert, B.C., have tested positive for the coronavirus.

In a statement issued Sunday, the health authority says the two residents live in the facility's west pod and testing is underway to identify if any other residents, staff or families have been infected.

Sixteen residents died during a COVID-19 outbreak that began at Acropolis Manor in mid-January and was only declared over on March 16.

Some of the highest rates of the virus in B.C. prompted health officials to hold mass vaccination clinics in Prince Rupert and Port Edward last month, immunizing about 85 per cent of area adults.

Recent data from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control shows infection rates dipped following those clinics and several others in North Coast cities, but cases of COVID-19 remain stubbornly high through the region.

Northern Health's chief medical health officer Dr. Jong Kim says the drop in COVID-19 infections won't happen instantly in Prince Rupert because it takes time for the vaccines to take effect.

"For people who got vaccinated, it does take two to three weeks for them to get the full protection from the vaccinations, so there can be a spread in the community, and for the individuals, after a few weeks after vaccinations … a few of them might still get that COVID-19," Dr. Kim said Tuesday to Carolina de Ryk, the host of CBC's Daybreak North.

"It's important that even with the vaccinations, we continue to [observe] some of the key basic measures like handwashing and physical distancing," he said.

Tap the link below to hear Dr. Jong Kim's interview on Daybreak North: