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QHC hospitals restrict visiting due to COVID case increases

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Hastings Prince Edward and elsewhere Quinte Health Care (QHC) hospitals are moving back to Phase 3 (red) of its Care Partner and Visiting Policy.

“The COVID-19 variants of concern are highly transmissible and pose a real threat to our vulnerable patients and staff,” said Dr. Colin MacPherson, Quinte Health Care’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.”

QHC’s screeners will also be restricting any care partners from out-of-province or any Red or Lockdown COVID-19 zone in Ontario.

In addition, anyone entering a QHC hospital is now required to wear a medical-grade mask. Masks will be handed out to patients and care partners at entrance screening stations. Cloth masks are no longer permitted. While patients may be required to remove their mask under certain circumstances, all care partners must wear a mask at all times and cannot eat or drink in the hospital.

With this change, QHC is prohibiting visitors (except if a patient is imminently dying) and is further limiting care partners. 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. For details, visit QHC’s website.

“We want our hospitals to be as safe as possible so patients feel comfortable coming to receive the medical care they require,” said Stacey Daub, Quinte Health Care’s President and CEO. “No one’s health care concerns should be ignored during the pandemic. Rest assured that our hospitals are safe and please don’t delay seeking the care that you need.”

QHC continues to increase virtual care options, where possible, so that patients can receive care from the comfort of their home in certain situations. Loved ones also have the option of connecting with a QHC patient virtually by requesting a virtual visit through QHC’s website.

“We understand that care partners are essential to healing and it is only in these most pressing circumstances that we are making the difficult decision to reduce contact between patients and their care partners,” said Daub. “We encourage patients and care partners to stay connected through virtual visits or through their own mobile devices.”

Filed Under: Local News

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