AN investigation is underway to establish the cause of a devastating Covid-19 outbreak at a Shinfield care home.

So far, 45 residents have tested positive for Covid-19 at Shinfield View Care Home and five of them have died. Staff have also tested positive with 49 team members contracting the virus.

Berkley Care Group, which runs the home, is now working with Public Health England, Berkshire West Clinical Commissioning Group and Wokingham Borough Council to contain the outbreak and investigate the cause.

Cllr Charles Margetts, the council’s executive member for health, said: “One might assume this level of Covid cases would indicate that something has seriously gone wrong at the home.

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“At the moment, we can find absolutely no evidence that this is the case.

“The reports I have seen have been very complementary about the home management and the dedication of the staff, many of whom actually lived in the home during the critical period to support the residents.”

He added: “This has obviously caused us significant issues.

“Not only do you have the healthcare issue to respond to, we also had 49 staff who were positive and had to go home and isolate.

“This had tremendous pressure on staffing of the home at a crucial period.

“I’m pleased to say we’re over the worst of this from a managerial situation and I wanted to thank all the people that have worked so hard to move this forward.”

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Andrew Winstanley, chief executive of Berkley Care Group, has said the team that runs the care home are “completely devastated” by the deaths and “doing everything we possibly can” to contain the outbreak.

During the pandemic, 166 people have died in the Wokingham borough after contracting the virus and 79 of those deaths occurred in care homes, according to the latest Office for National Statistics figures.