High View Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. Credit: Linda Pelletier / St. John Valley Times

Three more Aroostook County nursing home residents have died as COVID-19 outbreaks afflict facilities in Madawaska, Caribou and Eagle Lake.

The deaths of two residents at the 51-bed High View Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Madawaska were made public Tuesday evening by administrator Nancy Cote Daigle.

A resident of Mercy Home in Eagle Lake also died Tuesday.

Eight more residents have tested positive for the virus at the Madawaska facility, bringing the total afflicted in the outbreak there to 36, Daigle said.

TRACKING THE CORONAVIRUS IN MAINE

The number of High View employees who have tested positive for COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus, remained at 14 as of Tuesday. 

The High View and Mercy Home deaths brings to seven the number of Aroostook County nursing home residents who have died from the virus within the past week. 

One person died Christmas Day and two more on Monday at Caribou Rehab and Nursing Center, administrator Phil Cyr said Monday. By Tuesday afternoon, a fourth resident had died from the virus, although there were no new cases of COVID-19 at the 67-bed facility. 

Six patients tested positive for the virus on Dec. 21, and the number grew to 44 by Christmas Day. 

In addition to the 44 residents, 27 Caribou Rehab employees have tested positive for the virus as of Tuesday evening. 

Thirteen patients have recovered and seven more will be off quarantine as of Thursday, New Year’s Eve, Cyr said. 

On Tuesday, 57 Caribou Rehab employees and three residents received COVID-19 vaccines.

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Mercy Home, a 40-bed nursing facility in Eagle Lake, also has reported a COVID-19 outbreak. 

The death of the Mercy Home resident was reported Wednesday morning by administrator Denise Raymond. 

“It’s been hard on everyone,” Raymond said. “Our residents are like family; and to some of them, we are their ‘family.’ Most of them are elderly or otherwise vulnerable to this devastating virus. Our sympathies go out to the family.”

Thirteen residents and nine employees were confirmed to have active COVID-19 infections at the Eagle Lake facility, Northern Maine General said Wednesday.

Another 16 suspected resident cases are awaiting further lab confirmation, and one employee has recovered from the virus since the outbreak began. 

On Monday, St. John Valley Pharmacy hosted a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Mercy Home where 24 residents and 54 employees and affiliated staff received the vaccine.

A similar outbreak occurred at another Aroostook County nursing facility earlier in December. 

Five people died and 27 were infected during a COVID-19 outbreak at Presque Isle Rehab and Nursing Center. 

On Wednesday, the Maine Center for Disease Control reported 585 cases of COVID-19 in Aroostook County, and 23,499 in the state. 

As of Dec. 13, 701 nursing home residents in Maine have been infected with COVID-19, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Of those, 106 have died as a result of the virus.

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