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Hospitals further restrict visiting policy due to rising COVID-19 cases

With the dramatic increase in local COVID-19  activity, Quinte Health Care (QHC) has determined its four hospitals will further restrict visiting to protect patients, staff and physicians.

With this change from Green Phase to Yellow Phase, QHC is further limiting care partners and visitors effective Wednesday, Dec. 15.

A visitor is defined as someone who provides social support. A care partner is defined as a loved one and advocate who provides ongoing and essential social, emotional and physical support to a patient. A care partner is identified by the patient and provided identification by QHC. Care partners MUST provide proof of vaccination (very few exceptions apply).

“We don’t take lightly this decision to reduce visiting opportunities for our patients, especially around the holidays, but the Omicron variant is highly transmissible and poses a real threat to our vulnerable patients,” said Dr. Colin MacPherson, QHC’s Chief of Staff. “By reducing the flow of people throughout our hospitals we are doing what we can to limit the potential for spread.”

Some of the more significant changes as QHC moves to YELLOW include:
– Low acuity, short stay patients are allowed one consistent care partner
– Patient receiving life-altering news can have one consistent care partner
– Patients giving birth can have one consistent care partner
– Paediatric patients can have one care partner at a time

– The majority of emergency department patients are not allowed a care partner. One consistent care partner is permitted for those with an imminent risk of dying, those with cognitive or significant mobility issues, and paediatric patients.
– Stable ICU patients are allowed one consistent care partner
– Outpatients and pre-operative patients are allowed one consistent care partner only if required (e.g. frail/elderly, patient with cognitive impairment, non-verbal or severely disabled, support to receive news or plan for further care). If not required, then no care partner.

Further details can be found on the visiting page of the QHC website – www.qhc.on.ca.

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