A nurse’s quick thought saved the lives of 13 dementia patients with coronavirus symptoms


A heroic nurse used the expertise she gained from working during the swine flu crisis to save the lives of 13 dementia patients who contracted a coronavirus.

Maria Spollin built on her previous experience after five of the 50 residents of Church Farm at Skylarks in West Bridgford, Nottingham tested positive for Covid-19 and eight others showed symptoms

Maria worked for 20 years at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, so she was at the heart of the swine flu epidemic in 2009 and became a specialist in advanced life support.

Thanks to her extensive knowledge, she used zoning at home. After obtaining permission from the families, she isolated residents infected with the virus and turned the community area into a makeshift room for them, reports Mail Online.

People over 70 are most at risk of contracting the deadly virus, but as of April 23, the 13 patients cared for by Maria were fully recovered and the nursing home was declared free of Covid-19.

Maria Spollin used her experience of the swine flu crisis
Maria Spollin used her experience of the swine flu crisis

Maria said: “It was a very difficult decision to make, weighing the consequences if someone had not caught the virus but was confined with people who had it, I risked putting it at risk.”

Helen Walton, director of Church Farm Skylark, added, “With a care home, you know there is a good chance that the coronavirus will arrive. Maria had discussed with us what we should do, so we were well prepared.

“Four staff members worked 24 hours a day to care for the sick. These workers have been isolated from work colleagues and other residents to prevent the spread of the virus. They worked so hard, changing clothes and bedding and making sure that hygiene was at the highest level. Their professionalism was magnificent. “

Retired Brigadier Peter Stevenson was the first resident to contract the virus.

Church Farm Skylark is in West Bridgeford, Nottingham
Church Farm Skylark is in West Bridgeford, Nottingham

Retired British Army Brigadier Peter Stevenson was declared fit April 23 - his 86th birthday
Retired British Brigadier Peter Stevenson was declared fit April 23 – his 86th birthday

He showed signs of having Covid-19 after developing a cough and sore throat before celebrating his 86th birthday the same day the house was declared free from coronavirus.

The house makeshift service has been thoroughly cleaned in case the virus returns.

The news comes as devastating official figures show nursing homes have suffered more than 4,000 deaths from coronavirus in just two weeks,

Some 4,343 “suspected or confirmed” deaths from Covid-19 involvement were reported to the Care Quality Commission between April 10 and 24.

The staggering figure – a new method of counting deaths – is a huge increase from the latest official figure for the number of people in coronavirus dying care homes.

And the actual total will be higher.

CQC figures do not cover Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. There is a delay of up to three days to report each death. And they do not cover deaths notified to the CQC before April 10, when a new method of recording the alleged Covid-19 was introduced.


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