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Three deaths at Craigieburn nursing home as Melbourne aged-care crisis expected to worsen

Three deaths at Craigieburn nursing home as Melbourne aged-care crisis expected to worsen

Three residents have died from COVID-19 at an aged-care home in Melbourne’s north, while visitors are being kept out at other facilities.

The fatality at Arcare in Craigieburn was the home’s third resident to die from COVID-19.

Arcare chief executive Colin Singh said while the resident had underlying health issues, the deaths were “very upsetting”.

“We were heartened that this resident’s family, wearing complete personal protective equipment, was able to visit during their final moments,” he said.

“We send our thoughts and condolences to the resident’s family and friends.”

Arcare Craigieburn has 45 cases of COVID-19, 23 of which are residents, 20 staff members and two allied health professionals.

Two residents remain in hospital.

Mr Singh said there had been “some stability” in numbers over the past few days since the site recorded its first positive infections on July 12.

“We are extremely mindful that this outbreak is not over and continue to do everything possible to bring it under control while maintaining the care and support of our vulnerable residents,” he said.

The Herald Sun reported distressed family members had gathered outside the entrance of St Basil’s facility in Fawkner on Sunday where dozens of cases have emerged.

Spiros Dimitriou’s father, John, tested positive a week ago and remained in the home on a ventilator.

Mr Dimitriou and his family had been trying to contact the home to find out the 75-year-old’s condition.

“I got a phone call on Friday saying that Dad’s going to pass away, that he wasn’t going to make it. He’s still in there,” he said. “It sounded like he was on his deathbed.”

Premier Daniel Andrews said all deaths in care had the potential for review by the coroner.

“As for individual operators and providers of aged care, obviously they have to be accountable for what they have or haven’t done,” he said.

Seven elderly Victorian who were linked to outbreaks in aged-care homes died on Sunday after the state recorded 457 more infections.

There are more than 550 active cases now linked to facilities.

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