AN elderly resident with Parkinson’s disease and dementia has defeated coronavirus after being nursed back to full health by dedicated care home workers.

Joseph Martin, 79, has been living in the Elm Tree Residential Home, in Frinton, since last October.

In early March, the home went into lockdown due to the coronavirus, meaning Mr Martin hasn’t properly seen his wife - who would usually visit every day - for more than two months.

Towards the end of April, the “happy and sociable guy”, started to lose his appetite and would often feel tired but wasn’t displaying symptoms of coronavirus.

As a precaution, Mr Martin was taken to Colchester Hospital, before he was discharged at 2am and sent back to the care home without being tested for Covid-19.

Nonetheless, staff at Elm Tree placed him in isolation for two weeks, and his laundry was stored in a bag for 72 hours before it could be washed.


Shortly after returning to the home, an opportunity arose for Mr Martin - who was still asymptomatic - to be tested, in a bid to fully rule out the possibility of coronavirus.

Just over a week later, to the shock of the care home’s workers, his results came back positive.

“I was just in floods of tears when I found out he had coronavirus and it broke my heart because he wasn’t even tested in hospital,” said Elm Tree manager Siobhan Phelan.

“He was asymptomatic but he just wasn’t acting his usual self, usually he is happy and sociable.

“But, in the end, he got the right care he needed here and thankfully we have been prepared ever since we went into lockdown.

“We were already doing everything we should have been, and our staff did everything right to help him.

“Joseph needs recognition for overcoming this virus because I think it is amazing and he is now so much better.”

After Mr Martin’s heath scare, bosses at Elm Tree proceeded to test every resident and employee.

Thankfully, all of the results have since returned as negative and the home is now completely free of coronavirus.

“We have contained and stopped the spread and we have all done a good job,” added Miss Phelan.

“This has hit care homes hard and it has been a hard time for my staff and we have been in tears.

“We are putting ourselves and our families at risk, and we have been worrying and been emotional.

“But we have done a good job and shown that it can be beaten.”