by Brandon Mayer
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Bayfield Manor, owned and operated by Southbridge Care Homes, continues to see progress with its new long term care home being built adjacent to Bayfield, which will provide 160 new long term care beds to the town.
The Times reached out to representatives from Southbridge Care Homes for an update on the construction progress. Beryl Collingwood, Vice President of Seniors’ Advocacy and Strategic Partnerships at Southbridge Care Homes, replied, “We are making excellent progress on construction of the new Southbridge Kemptville Long-Term Care Home, and are on-track to begin welcoming residents home in Summer 2022. One of our plans for the new home is to implement a new technology that will allow us to monitor and analyze the health and wellness of our residents, and help us ensure their ongoing safety. Using a real-time location system (RTLS), we will be able to detect hazardous situations, reduce incident response time and monitor and minimize possible transmission of a virus in the event of an outbreak.
“The new home will offer private or two-bed rooms, which supports infection prevention and control, and will offer residents a number of modern amenities, including a spa room, activity room, computer lounge and library, as well as a resident family lounge for social gatherings. We are also pleased to offer residents and families a number of medical services, including in-home medical care provided by physicians, contracted diagnostic services available on-site (ie. bloodwork, x-ray and ultrasound services), physiotherapy and pharmacy services.”
Construction work on the new facility began in November of 2020. The provincial government has been investing money in long term care homes, including the building of new homes, and upgrading existing homes. Southbridge reportedly received $7.6 million to support the construction of the new facility in Kemptville. The Times reported in March of 2021 that the new long term care spaces were a significant need in the community, as the waiting list for spaces at that time was sitting at a high of 200, with many people waiting over a year for a spot.
As with all long term care homes in the province, Bayfield Manor must adhere to strict COVID-19 safety protocols designed to protect the vulnerable elderly population. It remains to be seen whether some of these protocols will be loosened by the time the new facility opens, though it is clear that infection control measures will always be a priority.