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DPH appoints temporary manager to Norwich nursing home after several COVID violations

New London

NORWICH, Conn. (WTNH) — Three Rivers, a nursing home in Norwich, is now being overseen by a new manager after several violations during the pandemic.

The temporary manager will oversee hiring, facility operations, nursing home procedures and budgetary matters.

The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) said it uncovered several violations after conducting unexpected visits to the facility.

The violations included everything from protecting a resident from dehydration to failing to conduct nursing assessments in response to the needs of patients.

RELATED: Union rep. for some employees at Norwich nursing home says blame should go elsewhere for violations found by DPH

DPH said it found an overwhelming amount of these violations over a three-week monitoring period.

Officials said the purpose of these unannounced visits was to conduct a COVID-19 inspection survey.

Since July 24, DPH said at least 21 residents and six staff became infected with the virus — four of those patients have died.

Officials visited the facility about 10 times in three weeks and monitored residents for 24 hours.

Other violations include putting COVID positive and COVID negative patients together in the facility, having the same staff tend to both positive and negative patients at the same time, inadequate staffing and failing to test 100 percent of their staff weekly.

Barbara Cass with DPH said officials also checked in on complaints from families who had concerns about the inner workings of the facility. She said strong COVID protocols are needed more now than ever.

“The most important goal is to restore safety to the building, enhanced compliance with infection control,” she said. “We need assurances that the residents they’re caring for are safe.”

DPH is still monitoring the facility very closely, and Cass said an updated assessment on how COVID protocols are doing within the next 24 to 48 hours.

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