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Oceanview retirement community residents 'shelter in place' amid COVID-19 spread

Four residents of Oceanview of Falmouth have tested positive or presumptive positive for COVID-19.

FALMOUTH, Maine — As of Thursday afternoon, the entrance to Oceanview of Falmouth has been blocked off to visitors. Security officers monitoring the entrance told NEWS CENTER Maine that only facility staff would be permitted beyond the entrance for the time being.

It's just one example of the aggressive measures the facility is putting into place in order to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Four residents of Oceanview of Falmouth have now tested positive or presumptive positive for COVID-19. On Thursday, March 19, the Maine Center for Disease Control reported two residents at Oceanview have tested presumptive positive for COVID-19. Two other positive cases of COVID-19 at the facility were reported by the CDC on Sunday. 

One patient is being treated at Maine Medical Center. The three other patients are recuperating at Oceanview, under quarantine. 

Upon learning of the latest test results, the facility issued a "shelter in place" order for all residents.

In an online message, Oceanview Executive Director Maureen Connolly and Director of Operations Diane Kibbin said the facility's wellness team is monitoring all residents. 

"Since the initial positive tests, our wellness team has been conducting daily checks on those determined to have been exposed," the letter says. 

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In the letter, the facility leaders say treatment for the patients is being coordinated by those individual's healthcare providers, but facility staff is working to assist them where appropriate.

Over the phone Thursday, facility spokesperson Linda Varrell explained to NEWS CENTER Maine this is because Oceanview does not have a full medical facility. 

During a press briefing on Thursday, Maine CDC director Dr. Nirav Shah said his agency has been working closely with Oceanview to tackle the spread of the virus. 

"As soon as we detected the first cases, the very next day we had Maine CDC field epidemiologists who were on-site at the facility. We immediately provided recommendations to the facility, the first was notifying everybody," said Dr. Shah.

In the letter, Connolly and Kibbin say residents are being asked to self-monitor for symptoms and are checking their temperatures twice a day. 

The facility is also strongly recommending all residents self-quarantine for 14 days. 

To read the full letter, click here.

 

At NEWS CENTER Maine, we're focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: /coronavirus

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