A team of volunteers from North Langley Community Church dropped by Langley Lodge during the outbreak to say thanks to frontline workers for all they did during the long-term care centre’s COVID outbreak. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley Lodge report raises questions about outbreak that killed 25 at seniors home

CEO defends leaked document that’s igniting queries about BC’s most deadly COVID outbreak

Mistakes were made, but a 30-page report addressing B.C.’s most deadly coronavirus outbreak this spring at Langley Lodge was not intended to lay blame or point fingers, according to its author.

The report by Debra Hauptman, chief executive officer (CEO) of the long-term seniors care home on 204th Street in Langley City, was leaked to some Lower Mainland media. It chronicles the ordeal, and brings into question some of the protocols put in place and steps taken during two COVID-19 outbreaks at the centre that claimed the lives of 24 people directly and one indirectly.

“The intent of the report is to share our experience with other operators, to inform planning for further outbreaks, and for a potential second wave in the fall,” Hauptman said Thursday, defending her report.

“The intent of the report was not to shift blame or responsibility to other partners for events that unfolded during our outbreak,” she elaborated.

“It does highlight discovery of unanticipated impacts of COVID-19 in a long-term care home, and those discoveries led to responsive actions in a massive, coordinated effort to contain the spread of the virus,” Hauptman said.

RELATED: Langley Lodge reports one new COVID-19 death, bringing total to 24

Langley Lodge is a contracted long-term care facility operated by Langley Care Society, with about 140 residents and 150 staff.

It was hit with the first coronavirus outbreak at the end of March, when a staff member was diagnosed. That outbreak was declared over on April 23. Then the second outbreak was reported on April 28, during which 51 residents were diagnosed with COVID. Two dozen died, while 27 residents recovered. Since then, however, one of the patients who survived the virus has also succumbed to advanced dementia.

At one point, part way through the second outbreak in late May, Fraser Health took charge of the outbreak response at the seniors care home, sending in a germ-killing machine and a health authority director to oversee the pandemic response.

RELATED: Fraser Health takes charge of COVID response at Langley Lodge

“Langley Lodge is appreciative of the support from Fraser Health during our outbreak. The infection prevention and control specialists, added staffing support and overall pandemic coordination was necessary and the significant resources lead to a resolution of the outbreak,” said the CEO.

Hauptman said she wrote the report to “document the story and experience of a COVID-19 outbreak in Langley Lodge, a historical development in the organization’s 45 year history serving seniors in the South Fraser region.”

The report apparently offers a time frame of the events, a detailed overview of the incident, and some criticisms of how things were handled during the outbreak.

Langley Advance Times has requested a copy of the report from the non-profit organization overseeing operation of Langley Lodge. We have not, however, been among the media approaching staff and public in the centre’s parking lot.

“As Dr. Bonnie Henry mentions frequently, we are in this together, we are learning, and we are adapting as we move through this pandemic,” Hauptman said. “Certainly there were challenges and frustrations, yet there was resolution of the outbreak. This should create hope for other long-term care operators.”

RELATED STORIES:

• Canada Day serenade planned for Langley Lodge residents

• Langley Lodge’s deadly outbreak declared over

• Death toll rises in COVID-19 outbreak at Langley Lodge

• COVID claims 23rd Langley Lodge patient, making it the deadliest outbreak in B.C.

• Langley Lodge ordered to swab all residents staff, new cases discovered

Release of this report comes as Dr. Bonnie Henry, the provincial health officer, announces another record breaking number of new cases in the province. There are 165 new cases, with 57 individuals in hospital, 22 in intensive care.

“There are two new health-care facility outbreaks, one at Delta Hospital and one at Peace Arch Hospital, both in the Fraser Health region. In total, 11 long-term care or assisted-living facilities and five acute-care facilities have active outbreaks,” Henry reported.

“There have been no new community outbreaks, although there continue to be community exposure events.”

• Stay tuned for more, as it comes available

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