COVID-19: nursing home bans visits

A nursing home in Gooik (Flemish Brabant) is banning all visits out of concern about COVID-19.  A worker at the home was in indirect contact with a coronavirus patient. The Flemish Care Agency says the measure is unnecessary.

A spokesman for the nursing home notes: “At the minute no infection has been confirmed.  The staff member has no noticeable symptoms.  This is also the case of residents. It’s a preventative measure.  In this way we wish to limit the risk to vulnerable residents and other staff.  The man, who was indirectly in contact with the virus, is staying at home awaiting the outcome of his test.”

The nursing home says friends and relatives of residents understand the measure and are generally pleased it is being taken.

Joris Moonens of the Flemish Care Agency expresses understanding for the nursing home’s response as it concerns very vulnerable people, but is not enthusiastic: “We strongly advise against banning visits because these are important for residents.  Even if a resident or staff member tests positive at a nursing home, it won’t have to be closed.  It’s better to follow general guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus.”