WINDSOR, ONT. -- Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare says it is strengthening its partnership with Schlegel Villages in response to an ongoing COVID-19 outbreak at the Village at St. Clair, including having hospital management on-site.

A news release from HDGH issued Thursday says the president and CEO, Janice Kaffer, and other members of the management team and staff will be on-site to establish “a deepened and more closely supportive presence at the Village.”

“Both the hospital and Schlegel, with the support of the Ministry of Long-Term Care and Ontario Health, have identified several priorities and the HDGH team plans to respond as quickly as possible to start identifying and assisting the Village with their needs,” the release says.

The Village at St. Clair reported its first case of COVID-19 on Dec. 8, since then, 97 residents and 67 staff members have tested positive for the virus.

HDGH says it will assume responsibility for priorities like enhanced oversight related to communications, infection prevention control and education, reporting, physician oversight and on-site leadership.

Hospital staff will be working closely with Joanne Potts, the senior-vice president of operations at the Village who is also stationed at the home full time.

“Together, the commitment between the two organizations is to ensure the safety of the residents and staff remains a top priority,” the release said. “The two teams continue to work closely with Public Health and other partners and are taking every precaution in caring for residents and the staff.”

HDGH says communication with staff, residents and families is underway and will offer more information to the public as it becomes available.