Fifteen people at care home die in three-week period after testing positive for coronavirus

The care home is privately owned but they are working with the council to "manage and contain the situation". Credit: ITV Wales

Fifteen people at a care home in Llangollen have died after testing positive for coronavirus in a three-week period.

Llangollen Fechan Care Home said it recorded almost 90 positive cases among staff and residents as well as the deaths.

Of those cases, 56 were among residents. On the care home's website, it states they have capacity for a maximum of 70 residents.

A team, comprising of the council, Public Health Wales and Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, has been set up in response to the numbers at Llangollen Fechan Care Home.

The care home is privately owned but Denbighshire Council have said they are working with the home and "control measures have been put in place".

Co-chair of the team investigating the outbreak, Nicola Stubbins, said: "Over the last three weeks there have sadly been 56 positive cases and 15 deaths with coronavirus amongst residents.

"In addition 33 staff members have been tested positive for the virus over the same period."

Ms Stubbins reassured that measures like "limiting the movement of staff and residents" had been taken to reduce transmission of the virus.

She added: "Our thoughts and condolences are with all affected and we remain committed to working together to address the situation."

Thirty-three staff members have tested positive for the virus. Credit: ITV Wales

In a statement, Roberts Homes (North Wales) Limited, which runs the care home, said: "Our deepest sympathies and sincere condolences go out to the families of those deceased residents.

"We are continuing to support the next of kin who have lost a loved one and also those families whose loved ones remain in our care, during this difficult time.

"As an organisation we are working with the relevant departments of Denbighshire County Council, Public Health Wales and many other organisations to manage and contain the situation and continue to follow the appropriate guidelines."We very much appreciate the support we are being given."

The statement goes on to thank staff for their continued support and emphasises that their "main priority will always be to make sure all of the residents in our homes are as safe as possible".

The company said they "are taking every precaution to ensure prevention measures are in place to contain the outbreak and minimise transmission", that includes continued regular testing of staff and residents.

When asked about the situation at a Welsh Government press briefing on Friday, the First Minister said "a lot of help is being provided" to the home.

Mr Drakeford said that help is also being given to all care homes to ensure "all those basic things the care home itself has to take responsibility for are being doe in the best possible way".

He added that most Welsh care homes are not run by local authorities and so they are focussing on making sure private companies and organisations are properly implementing the procedures that have been agreed between the sector and Welsh Government.

Reacting to the coronavirus cases at Llangollen Fechan, Mario Kreft MBE, the chair of Care Forum Wales, said: "We would like to extend our condolences to the families of those who have passed away.

"This tragic case is a stark and cruel reminder how virulent and dangerous the Covid-19 is.

"Right at the outset of the pandemic, Care Forum Wales was ahead of the curve in calling for an efficient and effective testing regime and, while things have improved, we are not there yet.

"If we don’t protect the vulnerable people for whom we provide care and our staff many more people will die as a result. We cannot and must not let that happen."

The First Minister reiterated in Friday's press conference that Welsh Government are looking at how new, fast turnaround tests could be deployed to help care homes.