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Armenian Nursing Home Hit By Coronavirus Outbreak


Armenia -- The closed entrance to a nursing home in Yerevan where at least 45 elderly residents and personnel were infected with coronavirus, May 18, 2020.

Dozens of residents and employees of a nursing home in Yerevan were hospitalized or isolated at the weekend after testing positive for coronavirus.

According to the Armenian Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, three of its 17 hospitalized residents remained in a critical condition on Monday.

The 28 other persons infected with the virus are care home personnel. A spokeswoman for the ministry, Sona Martirosian, said they are kept in isolated hotels because of showing no symptoms of the disease.

Some 200 elderly people lived in the nursing home located in Yerevan’s Nork district until the outbreak. Martirosian said that they all underwent coronavirus tests immediately after the health authorities detected the first infections there late last week.

Martirosian told Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) that those residents whose test results were negative will be tested again later this month. She said the authorities have deployed additional medical workers to monitor their condition around the clock.

Armenia has only three nursing homes where a total of 580 retirees live and receive care and, if necessary, medical assistance. All of them were placed in strict lockdown in late February even before the authorities registered the first coronavirus case in the country.

So far COVID-19 infections have been reported only at the Nork home. The primary source of those infections is not yet known.

Vahan Zurabian, the director of another Yerevan-based care home, confirmed that there have been no coronavirus cases among its 210 residents. He said that his employees looking after them have strictly observed the confinement rules.

“The personnel also don’t go home [after finishing their daily work,]” said Zurabian. “There have been no visits or physical contacts [with outsiders.]”

All over the world care homes have been particularly vulnerable to outbreaks of the virus because of the old age of their residents and close physical contact among them.

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