Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare outbreak grows to 23 cases

·2 min read

An outbreak of COVID-19 on the third floor of the rehab unit of Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare (HDGH) has grown to 23 cases, according to the hospital.

In a news release Wednesday, the hospital said that six patients and 17 healthcare workers have tested positive for the virus. It added that it's still waiting on some test results from the weekend.

The hospital first declared an outbreak at its rehab unit on Sunday.

"In consultation with the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, HDGH has paused all admissions to our inpatient Restorative Care programs. Both Windsor Regional Hospital and Erie Shores HealthCare are aware of this," the release reads. "This includes CMC, Palliative and Rehab. We will also be pausing all transfers out to Long Term Care etc. This will be assessed every 24 hours. Further, we will be cohorting all COVID-19 positive patients on the third floor of our Rehabilitation Unit."

In an interview with CBC's Afternoon Drive, HDGH President and CEO Janice Kaffer said that two of the patients had been transferred to acute care at Windsor Regional Hospital, three are still at HDGH, and one has been discharged.

In spite of the outbreak, Kaffer was optimistic it could be addressed.

"[The outbreak] has put some additional strain on all of us," she told Afternoon Drive host Chris dela Torre. "But our people are stepping up, they're continuing to come into work, and we're doing the best we can."

She said the the investigation by the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit with respect to the origins of the outbreak continues.

"Our focus at the hospital has been addressing the outbreak, containing it, and making sure our staff and our patients have the supports and that the needs are met across the hospital," she said.

Kaffer said HDGH has about 20 test results pending from the affected area, and that testing across the hospital will continue this week.

She added that they're expecting to see some positive results among the 1200 staff at the hospital that will be from community spread, and not related to the outbreak.

Sanjay Maru/CBC
Sanjay Maru/CBC

The hospital said the outbreak is not affecting outpatient and mental health programs.

Those will will be continued so long patients and clients wear personal protective equipment (PPE) at all times, and that patients who require a family member to be present for their care only have one visitor, who is expected to follow all instructions given by staff.

"It is important to note that Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare is and remains a safe place for outpatient and mental health visits," the release said.

"During this difficult time, services at this time will not look the same. Individuals should expect delays and should anticipate that they are expected to wear an approved mask."