Drumheller Health Centre has paused surgeries and acute care admissions due to a COVID-19 outbreak in both the acute and long-term care wards.
Although new admissions have been temporarily paused, the emergency department and obstetrics continue to remain open and available.
“In order to reduce transmission, we have temporarily paused new admissions to acute care,” a spokesperson for Alberta Health Services (AHS) tells the Mail.
An outbreak was declared for the acute care ward on Sunday, January 2 with long-term care declaring an outbreak on Thursday, January 6.
Three positive cases have so far been linked to the acute care outbreak, and an additional six cases to the long-term care outbreak. Contact tracing and testing of all patients and staff has been implemented as a temporary measure at the facility to monitor for asymptomatic cases.
Along with the pause to admissions, the facility has also temporarily postponed inpatient surgical procedures; day surgeries are expected to continue.
A timeline for when admissions will resume was not available and a decision will be made based on the outbreak duration. An outbreak is declared in acute care and continuing care facilities when two or more cases have been reported; outbreaks are considered over four weeks after the last case is identified.
Update: According to an AHS spokesperson, "Admissions reopened to patients from the Emergency Department on Friday (January 7)."
Patients requiring emergent surgery or those with procedures scheduled will continue to take place at Drumheller Health Centre or other AHS facilities as resources allow; specific patients impacted by the pause will be directly contacted by healthcare teams.
Lacie Nairn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Drumheller Mail