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Four deaths reported among residents at Inverness-shire care home where Covid-19 outbreak began last month

By Alasdair Fraser

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Meallmore Lodge Care Home. Picture: Gary Anthony.
Meallmore Lodge Care Home. Picture: Gary Anthony.

Four people have died since a mass outbreak of Covid-19 first was reported at an Inverness-shire nursing home late last month.

The sad death toll was disclosed today as it emerged Meallmore Lodge Care Home near Daviot was still dealing with 22 active cases of the virus, with 12 residents and 10 staff currently in isolation.

The scale of infection at the privately-run facility, seven miles south of Inverness, was first made public on January 28 when 35 cases – 17 in residents and 18 in staff – were reported by NHS Highland.

Since then, the total number affected since the outbreak began has risen steadily and reached 76 earlier this week, including 39 residents and 37 staff.

A spokeswoman for the care home's parent company Meallmore Ltd revealed that four lives had been lost in the weeks since the infection first swept through the home.

She praised care home staff for valiant efforts in striving to protect residents.

The spokeswoman said: “Throughout this outbreak, the majority of our residents have been asymptomatic and have since recovered.

“However, we have very sadly lost four of our wonderful residents who have been with us for some time and our thoughts and condolences are with their family and friends during this very difficult time.

“Currently we have 12 residents and 10 staff members who are isolating because they are COVID-19 positive.

“Meallmore Lodge residents and staff were vaccinated against COVID-19 with their first dose in January.”

The home is continuing to work with NHS Highland and other health professionals in an effort to bring the outbreak under control.

The spokeswoman added: “This remains, of course, a very worrying situation for families of residents and staff, and we continue to do everything we can to support them to return to good health.

“We are taking all steps to minimise the spread of the virus including caring for residents in their rooms, continuing to restrict staff movement, focusing on high standards of infection control and we have an enhanced level of testing in place.

Meallmore Lodge Care Home.
Meallmore Lodge Care Home.

“We are in contact with the next of kin of our residents, and we are grateful for their ongoing support and understanding.

“We are very proud of our colleagues and how they have shown huge dedication and commitment to our residents.

“With a combination of our own team supported by our trusted local agencies, we continue to maintain appropriate levels of cover across the home to ensure the wellbeing, comfort and safety of our residents.

“The home continues to be well supplied with the medical equipment and PPE needed to protect residents and colleagues alike.

“We have robust infection control practices in place, and we are working extremely closely with our local health partners as we respond to the outbreak.”

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