French care home where staff locked themselves in with residents defies Covid-19

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A care home in France which took a novel approach to warding off coronavirus (Covid-19) has emerged with a clean bill of health.

As coronavirus cut a deadly path through care homes across the country, Valerie Martin vowed that the story would be different in the home she runs.

To keep Covid-19 at bay and stop it from infecting and killing the vulnerable older adults in her care, Martin and her staff locked themselves in with the 106 residents.

Vilanova care home residents play board games in Corbas, central France
Residents at the Vilanova care home in Corbas, central France (Valerie Martin via AP)

For 47 days and nights, staff and residents of the Vilanova care home on the outskirts of the east-central city of Lyon waited out the coronavirus storm together, while the illness killed more than 9,000 people in other homes in France.

On Monday, Martin and 12 other colleagues who stayed in the home for the full duration were planning to end their quarantine.

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They were coming out with an uplifting victory: coronavirus tests conducted on the residents and staff all came back negative.

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