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SHA releases phased Service Resumption Plan – meadowlakeNOW

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The SHA’s Service Resumption Plan is four phases and serves as a framework; implementation will vary across the province based on factors like outbreaks, capacity, availability of health care workers and availability of key supplies. Only the first phase has a specific date. All future phases will be based on assessing these and other factors constantly to ensure it is safe to move forward.

Phase 1: Resumption of some everyday health services and expansion of surgeries and diagnostic imaging – Phase 1 will start May 19, 2020.

Highlights from this phase include:

• Surgical services: phased expansion of surgeries from emergency and three week urgent cases to those booked as six week urgent cases, resulting in a 10 to 25 per cent increase in surgical services.

Ex. Cataracts, hysterectomy, cochlear, thoracic

• Diagnostic imaging: Increased outpatient volumes, including:

o MRI: increase from 50 per cent of normal capacity to 75 per cent of normal capacity

o CT: increase from 55 per cent of normal capacity to 75 per cent of normal capacity

• Primary Care Clinics: expand availability, continue to use virtual care where possible, and prioritize in person visits for those living with chronic diseases

• All routine immunizations

• Public Health Inspections: increase inspections of long-term care homes, personal care homes and group homes.

• Mental health and addictions: re-open mental health short stay units, allow the option of in-person appointments as needed, allow more therapeutic/day programming for groups under 10 people and resume regular hours for harm reduction programs.

• Also includes gradual re-introduction of services in other key areas like home care, kidney health, rehabilitation and therapy programs.

Interdisciplinary teams, including physicians, will continue assessing all waiting patients to ensure surgeries and diagnostics are performed in a timely manner.

Established online programs and virtual care will continue to be used in the delivery of service across the province, wherever possible. There will be renewed opportunity for in-person appointments when necessary. Patient flow through facilities will be designed to achieve physical distancing and staggered appointments will assist with limiting the number of patients in a facility at any one time.

Phase 2: Specialty Clinics (dates to be determined)

The plan notes that SHA-operated specialty clinics will continue with virtual care at specialty clinics, where possible.

Other highlights from this phase include service delivery in the following specialty areas:

• Electrophysiology, cath lab, cardiac stress testing, outpatient heart monitoring

• Respiratory:

o Level three sleep disorders testing

o Respiratory outpatient clinic

o Tuberculosis clinic and treatments

• Eye centre testing

• Dermatology clinics

• Cast clinics

• Increased fetal testing at high risk antenatal clinics

Phase 3: Further Expansion of Everyday Health Services (dates to be determined)

Highlights from this phase include prioritizing resumption of service delivery in the following areas:

• Chronic Disease Management/Wellness Programs/Stroke Prevention

• Opioid Agonist Therapy

• Specialized services for clients with developmental disabilities, Autism and brain injuries

• Continued re-introduction of mental health and addictions services, including opening of social detox and addictions inpatient treatment

Phase 4: Full Resumption of Services (dates to be determined)

Final actions required for full resumption of services, including:

• Addition of long-waiting elective surgeries and previously postponed surgeries; and

• Re-open hip/knee outpatient clinic.

“Our service resumption plans are very much dependent on the health system’s ability to respond, in partnership with the public,” SHA Chief Medical Officer Dr. Susan Shaw said. “I recognize the feeling of wanting to get back to normal; however it’s essential that we proceed thoughtfully, and continue to maintain those everyday practices that have been so successful to date, including physical distancing, handwashing and staying home wherever possible.”

All patients immediately impacted will receive phone calls with updates specific to their situation, including new surgical or procedure dates, as appropriate. There is no need to contact your provider for this information.

panews@jpbg.ca

On Twitter: @princealbertnow

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What's open Ottawa: H&M reopens Rideau Street store | CTV News – CTV News

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OTTAWA —
Malls remain closed in the capital, under provincial orders, but stores with street entrances are allowed to reopen, and that means a popular fashion brand has reopened one of its stores in Ottawa.

H&M announced Thursday that its store at the Rideau Centre would reopen via its Rideau Street entrance.

Only 15 people will be allowed in the store at one time. The hours are to 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

There are markers on the floor for physical distancing. Fitting rooms have been closed and there is no garment recycling program for now.

Hand sanitizer is being provided.

While the store accepts cash, they are encouraging card use. There is one line for cash users and one line for card users at the registers.

Employees will be wearing masks, and will be behind barriers at the register. The store will be cleaned more often.

H&M will still accept returns, but says it will hold all returned items for at least 24 hours before putting them back on the sales floor.

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B.C. health officials say quick steps taken to help protect care homes – Prince George Citizen

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VICTORIA — The deaths of two more COVID-19 patients at long-term care homes in B.C. were mourned by provincial health officials Thursday, but they said lives may have been saved by the province’s quick response to the pandemic.

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said measures to fight COVID-19 possibly contributed to holding the number of deaths to less than 100 at long-term care homes while other provinces recorded thousands of fatalities.

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“We don’t know the specific impact of the measures, but we know the large measures that have been taken have had positive effect,” Dix said at a news conference.

He said B.C. ensured workers were able to be employed at a single care home, personal protective equipment was made available to workers, special health teams were brought in at the first signs of COVID-19 and visits were restricted at the homes.

“I think that B.C., though, can be proud of its long-term care workers,” said Dix. “We’ve adopted from the beginning a team B.C. approach to how we deal with this issue. I am, of course, saddened that we’ve lost 93 people, residents who live in long-term care.”

B.C. reported nine new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, bringing the provincial total to 2,558 people diagnosed with the virus. The total number of COVID-19 deaths stood at 164 people and 2,153 people have recovered from the disease.

Henry said efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 in long-term care homes is difficult but the province has been applying the many lessons it learned in an early outbreak at North Vancouver’s Lynn Valley Care Centre.

She said it was difficult to estimate how effective B.C.’s prevention measures were at the homes.

“We can only by analogy look at what happens in other places,” Henry said.

Thousands of residents at long-term care facilities in Quebec and Ontario have died of COVID-19.

Meanwhile, specialized health teams have been sent to fight COVID-19 outbreaks at two Metro Vancouver long-term care homes.

The Fraser Health Authority appointed a pandemic response director on Thursday at Langley Lodge, where more than 20 people have died from the virus in recent weeks.

It also sent extra staff to Nicola Lodge in Port Coquitlam after one resident tested positive Wednesday for COVID-19, said Dr. Martin Lavoie, Fraser Health’s chief medical health officer. The resident was placed in isolation at the lodge, he said.

“Over the past several weeks we’ve been supporting and offering guidance to Langley Lodge in different ways,” Lavoie said at a news conference.

“Today, we’re talking further action and we have appointed our own director of pandemic response to provide oversight of the COVID-19 response at Langley Lodge and also to further support the facility leadership and staff.”

The lodge website says it is a not-for-profit registered charity run by the Langley Care Society.

It says the lodge in Langley provides long-term care for adults who can no longer live safely or independently at home because of their health-care needs. The lodge includes 121 funded spaces and 14 private pay spaces.

An official at the lodge referred questions about the COVID-19 outbreak to Fraser Health.

Lavoie said the COVID-19 outbreak at the lodge has been difficult to control.

“It is our hope that these additional measures will support the site in controlling this complex outbreak,” he said. “We’re taking all the necessary steps to minimize the exposure to and transmission of COVID-19.”

Lavoie said extra nurses and staff are being called in along with infection control specialists who will use a specialized ultraviolet germ sterilization machine.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2020.

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COVID-19 case identified at second Port Coquitlam seniors home – The Record (New Westminster)

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A resident at a Port Coquitlam long-term care facility has tested positive for COVID-19, marking the third seniors care home in the Tri-Cities with at least one case of the coronavirus. 

Fraser Health identified the case at Nicola Lodge Wednesday, May 27, and the resident has been put into isolation at the facility.

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“This facility outbreak is a recent one. We’re still looking into it,” said Fraser Health’s top doctor, Dr. Martin Lavoie. 

Fraser Health does not currently know how the virus entered the facility.

Lavoie added that Fraser Health is in the process of investigating whether anyone has been in contact with the infected resident. Meanwhile, Fraser Health SWAT teams have implemented “enhanced control measures.”

The case marks a third flare up of the novel coronavirus in a Tri-City care home and the only active case in such a facility after the Shaughnessy and Dufferin care homes had their outbreaks declared over in recent weeks.

Nicola Lodge also marks the 17th seniors homes run by Sienna Living that has identified at least one case of COVID-19, according to a tally on their website. Most are in Ontario, including the Altamont Care Community in Scarborough, one of five seniors homes singled out in a recent report by the Canadian Armed Forces, which had been sent in to aid staff. 

The report, released Tuesday, details “horrific” allegations of insect infestations, aggressive resident feeding that caused choking, bleeding infections, and residents crying for help for hours across the five facilities.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford called it “the most heart-wrenching report” he’s ever read in his life, according to a report by the Canadian Press.

At Sienna Living’s Altamont Care Community, the report detailed several allegations of neglect, including residents not receiving three-meals a day, bed sores worn through ligament and tissue to the bone and dangerous errors in administering medication. 

The military said it brought in its own food to make sure residents were fed.

— with files from the Canadian Press

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