A DEADLY gastro virus which has left a Brisbane aged care home in lockdown all month has been linked to the deaths of seven residents.
The outbreak first hit several weeks ago, claiming the lives of two residents at the Regis aged care facility in Yeronga.
Claims of poor hygiene and understaffing from families of residents were denied by Regis, which also denied gastro was the cause of the initial deaths.
The centre has been in lockdown for 26 days, and five more residents, including two last Friday, have died, according to Channel Nine news in Brisbane.
A Regis spokesperson on Tuesday night reiterated "there have been no deaths confirmed as being as a result of gastro".
"As advised previously, Regis has experienced an episode of gastroenteritis at the Yeronga facility. It was first identified on 28 July. We are pleased to say that the episode is nearing completion," General Manager, Investor Relations and Corporate Services said.
"As of today, we are undertaking an industrial clean of the facility in preparation for the ceasing the gastroenteritis protocols tomorrow.
"Protocols remain in place in one wing as a precautionary measure.
"Regis has continued to work closely with the Public Health Unit as part of our established protocols and also implemented our infection control processes.
"During this period there have been seven deaths at the facility. These residents had a range of pre-existing ailments and while they may have been affected by gastroenteritis, in no case has gastroenteritis been recorded as the cause of death."
The first two deaths at the home came as a gastro outbreak spread across three Australian states a fortnight ago.
In addition to the Queensland deaths, 20 aged care and child care facilities in Melbourne were hit with a highly contagious stomach flu.
Meanwhile, NSW Health said there had been a 34 per cent increase in viral gastroenteritis notifications across the state over the previous year.
Back in Brisbane, at least 91 more cases of gastro were reported on a cruise ship which docked in the city on August 10.
On-board testing found norovirus to be the cause.
Regis' Wynnum facility in Brisbane was hit with a gastro outbreak in June, which affected 15 residents but did not result in any deaths, according to Metro South.