Revera’s information on Maples care home ‘less than accurate’ during weekend crisis: WRHA

Revera, the company that owns Maples Long Term Care Home, provided “less than accurate” information to the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) over the weekend about staffing at the home, the health authority’s president said Monday.

Only seven of 19 scheduled health-care aides were present at the Maples home after 7:30 on Friday night, the WRHA confirmed — despite earlier information provided by the for-profit company that owns the home that the shift was close to fully staffed during a crisis that saw eight people die in 48 hours.

Provincial officials then told Manitobans about the staffing levels in a news briefing.

“It’s really unfortunate that we’re here today to have to correct that record,” said Vickie Kaminski, president of the WRHA. “It certainly was not fulsome information provided by Revera, and which we then passed on.”

Eight people died over 48 hours at the home, which is the site of the province’s largest care home COVID-19 outbreak, after the condition of several residents with COVID-19 deteriorated rapidly on Friday night, Kaminski said. Multiple paramedics and ambulances were called to the home Friday to assess at least a dozen residents. 

On Saturday, health officials from the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and Revera told the public 13 of 15 health aides were on-staff that night. That was based on information from Revera’s regional vice-president, Kaminski said.

But after representatives from the Canadian Union of Public Employees disputed that claim, Kaminski said she pressed for more detail Monday morning, and learned that 12 of the 19 health-care aides scheduled to work from 3:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. were not present on Friday.

Four people were unable to come to work because they were self-isolating and a further eight people called in sick, Kaminski said. Some health-care aides from earlier in the day agreed to stay late to help out, but all day workers left by 7:30 p.m.

“I would suggest that this less than fulsome disclosure on [Revera’s] part has certainly put a strain on our relationship,” Kaminski said.

“I’m going to be following up with Revera and we will be seeking clarification as to what they knew and when they knew it, and why the information that they provided to us was less than accurate, and we will certainly be speaking with Revera about our expectations on a go-forward basis.”

WRHA to send staff into home

When asked if she believed she was deliberately misled, Kaminski said the WRHA is still in the process of determining what happened. Kaminski said it appears the information was “pulled together very quickly,” and that there were “assumptions made” that were not correct.

“We are going to be pursuing with Revera what our expectations are, and we’re going to be putting in place mechanisms and people from WRHA who will be able to verify information coming out of personal care homes,” Kaminski said.

Starting Tuesday, the WRHA will send a staff member to Maples to be onsite every day going forward. The health authority is also working to appoint three additional people to be part of that team.

Manitoba Health Minister Cameron Friesen on Sunday called an independent investigation into the care home, and a rapid response team was sent to the home on Saturday evening.

The Canadian Red Cross is also set to deploy 20 workers to the care home starting on Friday.

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