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COVID outbreak at Chelsea Soldiers’ Home

Apr 26, 2023Apr 26, 2023

A veteran assisted living facility in Chelsea, Massachusetts, is experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19 cases.

Massachusetts' Executive Office of Veterans' Services said Monday that it had called in the Department of Public Health after 15 residents and 10 workers at the Chelsea Soldiers' Home tested positive for COVID-19.

Officials say the first positive case came Wednesday, with an event on Sunday, May 28, believed to be the source of the outbreak.

"I wish those infected a speedy recovery and want to express my gratitude to all those who are working to ensure the safety and well-being of our residents and staff," Secretary Jon Santiago of the Executive Office of Veterans' Services said in a statement. "We remain vigilant in monitoring the situation in Chelsea, recognizing that although we are past the height of the pandemic, COVID-19 is endemic and cases will occur. Our team is taking a proactive and hands-on approach to this situation, implementing evidence-based measures, and working alongside DPH to monitor and provide the highest level of care to our residents and staff."

COVID-19 killed 31 veterans at the Chelsea facility during an outbreak in the early days of the pandemic.

Santiago's office said Monday that all of the residents who tested positive during this outbreak have received the bivalent booster of the COVID vaccine, and all but one have been taking therapeutics.

Two patients were hospitalized, and both have since returned back to the home.

"The Chelsea Veterans' Home staff is committed to providing a secure environment for our residents and staff," Robert Engell, the home's acting superintendent, said in a statement. "We are ensuring that all lines of communication remain transparent and accessible between our staff and relevant stakeholders and will continue to monitor the situation."

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