Coronavirus outbreak at care home with unvaccinated staff

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Halliste care home Source: Olev Kenk/ERR

Over half of the residents at a private care home in Viljandi are infected with the coronavirus as well as several members of staff. Care workers turned down the vaccinations.

Twenty-four residents of Halliste care home are infected and six employees have given positive tests. Now, only two staff members are currently working at the care home.

"We followed all rules, but unfortunately, it [coronavirus] came somehow," care home manager Merle Palk said.

The manager of the Health Board's southern region Tiiu Luht told ETV's "Aktuaalne kaamera" that the first person infected was an employee and that it is remarkable that no employee has been vaccinated yet.

Palk said: "I haven't decided yet if I'm going to get the vaccination or not. We can't force employees to do that because it's voluntary."

Two residents are now in a serious condition and have been taken to Viljandi Hospital and a third is being monitored.

"Viljandi Hospital has always stated that we are ready to help all nursing homes, but we have not received a definite request," Viljandi Hospital's Elina Randma said.

The Health Board has twice visited Halliste care home to carry out testing and advise employees. Two volunteers were sent to help but the care home sent them away two days later.

"On Sunday night, after two days of work, they gave up and said that they would be able to cope on their own," Tiia Luht said.

Palk said that the care home can handle the situation by itself at the moment: "We have everything under control," she said, adding if the home needs help they will ask for it.

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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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