Everything you need to know about latest developments and restrictions affecting elders
As of yesterday evening, we now sadly report a total of 173 Covid-19 cases in Tafta homes since 15 June last year. Of these, we have sadly lost 21 elders and one staff member, and we remain grateful for the recovery of 94 elders and 42 staff. There are currently 13 active elder and 2 active staff cases in:
John Conradie House/Langeler Towers: 4 residents and 2 staff members
Kings Hall: 1 elder
Tafta on Ridge: 4 elders
Tafta Park: 4 elders
This continues to be a very difficult and stressful period for all involved. The resource constraints we have experienced since the start of the pandemic have created a taxing environment for all those working in this field; we are extremely hopeful that we can anticipate the vaccine rollout in the near future.
We are cognizant of the perceptions and misinformation around the vaccine, and the fears and anxieties around being vaccinated. Our elders are often passive recipients of communication from the younger generation, who are much more tech-savvy. When these myths are forwarded on at an exponential rate, they become fact and feed levels of anxiety older people already feel as a vulnerable population. Let us all make a simple commitment to only share information from credible, verified sources, so that we can make informed choices regarding our health.
If you have any queries regarding friends or family members residing at the affected facilities, please contact the management team of the home or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yours in service,
[January 22, 2021]
Unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic has entered a new Tafta home – this time Tafta on Ridge in the Overport area.
An 80 year old man in the Independent Living section began displaying flu-like symptoms last week. He was transferred to a private health care facility, where he tested positive for the virus. The home’s care team has made contact with the Department of Health (DoH) and our social work team have begun the screening process in preparation for DoH testing.
This patient is not doing well and we ask that you please keep him in your prayers. Elders who have tested positive in two other Tafta homes are in good health, and we await results of the continued testing at Tafta Park.
If you have any queries regarding friends or family members residing at the facility, please contact the management team of the home or email email@example.com.
UPDATE: 13 July 2020
Four more Tafta Covid-19 cases have come to light in Tafta facilities, bringing our total number of infections to date to fifteen. A Tafta staff member was found to be positive last week. This was followed by more cases of elders testing positive in our homes Tafta on Ridge, Tafta Lodge on South Beach and our Tafta Kings Hall in the Durban CBD.
We will continue, together with our dedicated care teams on each site, to monitor these elders and work with the Department of Health (DOH) to screen and test those elders identified as high risk.
UPDATE: 20 July 2020
On Friday last week, 17 July 2020, we received news from the Department of Health that three more Tafta Langeler Towers residents, who were tested on 1 July 2020, are Covid-19 positive. These elders were already in self-isolation due to the screening process the social work team had already initiated and we believe the risk of these residents infecting others are minimal. The residents remain in isolation and the staff are monitoring them for symptoms until their isolation ends.
These recent cases bring the total number of our infections to date to eighteen with two of our first cases having fully recovered from the virus.
We continue to monitor those elders who are positive and work with the Department of Health (DOH) to screen and test those elders identified as high risk.
If you have any queries regarding friends or family members residing at the impacted facilities, please contact the management team of the home or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
[July 13, 2020]
A third Tafta elder, a resident at Tafta Park Care Cottage in the south of Durban, has been found to be Covid-19 positive following admission to a private hospital in Durban yesterday.
As part of the hospital’s pre-admission procedure, the elder, in her 80’s, was tested and results today confirmed her positive status. She will remain in the hospital.
Three care staff, two kitchen staff and the home’s sister, together with the eight frail elders in the Care cottage have been put into immediate isolation whilst they await results of Covid-19 tests. Full scale screening will begin immediately throughout Tafta Park.
The home will also immediately go into lockdown and the Department of Health have been contacted for further assistance.
These recent developments are devastating to Tafta and we appeal for the support of the community through thoughts and prayer as we navigate this difficult time.
If you have any queries regarding friends or family members residing at the facility, please contact the management team of the home or email email@example.com
[June 24, 2020]
On 22 June, Tafta Managment received news of a second elder testing positive for the Coronavirus. This elder has joined the first patient at the state quarantine facility in Clairwood. We await the results of four remaining elders who were tested and placed in isolation last week. To date, all staff have tested negative, but those who had contact with the infected elders have been asked to self-isolate with a new staff complement being rotated into the building to care for the remaining residents.
After much consideration and careful consultation with relevant health departments, we have made the decision to lockdown the John Conradie House/Langeler Towers complex from 25 June 2020. No one will be allowed out of the building complex for any reason, including work and scheduled appointments. No one, other than essential care services personnel, Tafta staff or members of health authorities supporting us in the management of the outbreak, will be allowed into the building.
These restrictions are necessary to contain and manage the spread and impact of the virus. Those who are unable to comply have been asked to seek alternate temporary accommodation until the Lockdown is lifted (at a date yet to be determined).
Elders opting to leave the building must leave their contact details for the track and trace process, should this be required. They will only be allowed back into the building complex when the lockdown has been lifted and will be required to self-isolate for 14-days on their return.
Be assured that the management team is doing everything in their power to ensure residents’ well-being. Please do not hesitate to contact building management or firstname.lastname@example.org should you have questions about family or friends.
We are in this fight together, and together, we shall overcome.
[June 24, 2020]
Our worst nightmare has just come true.
Yesterday, one of our residents at Langeler Towers tested positive for Covid-19. For over 600 elderly men and women who live here – and in the adjacent John Conradie House – it is devastating news. Everyone is aware that this is the age group most at risk from the disease.
Now we have to react quickly to ensure it doesn’t spread.
That means screening and testing a vast number of our residents, as well as all the impacted staff. We need to immediately set up a quarantine ward, with the necessary PPE … full hazmat suits, safe hazardous waste disposal bins and bags, extra hospital beds, extra gloves, N95 masks, sanitizing equipment and laundry services.
Very few of our residents have private medical aid – which means Tafta has to find the money for their tests … somehow … as well as everything else that’s needed.
Please help us respond to this urgent crisis, by making a donation of any amount right now.
Because the shocking truth is: if Covid-19 spreads through our Homes unchecked, elders are going to die.
These are men and women who still have a lot of living to do! They’ve patiently waited through weeks of lockdown, sustained by the belief that eventually they will feel their grandchildren’s arms around them again. Others have found new interests that have filled them with renewed vigour and enthusiasm for life. They ALL have plans for the future.
Please help us do everything possible to make sure those plans and dreams are realised. Your donation of any amount will make all the difference. It could even save a life.
Thank you for caring about those who are older and weaker than ourselves. They don’t deserve this deadly disease. No one does. Let us all do everything possible to protect our elders and help them through this crisis.
[June 16, 2020]