In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Northern Health is limiting the number of visitors allowed at its facilities, including G.R. Baker Memorial Hospital in Quesnel, effective March 18. (Quesnel Cariboo Observer file photo)

COVID-19: Northern Health limiting visitors at facilities until further notice

As of Monday, the health authority is also postponing non-urgent surgeries

Along with postponing non-urgent surgeries, Northern Health is now implementing visitor restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“To keep our patients, families and staff safe and in keeping with the provincial health officer’s recommendations for social distancing, Northern Health is limiting the number of visitors entering our buildings, effective immediately,” according to an information bulletin sent out Tuesday afternoon (March 17).

Until further notice, the following visitor restrictions are in place at Northern Health facilities:

• Hospital Emergency Departments, Intensive Care/Critical Care areas: one adult caregiver/support person

• Perinatal Unit: one adult caregiver/support person

• Neonatal ICU: two adult caregivers/support persons

• Inpatient Pediatric and Adult Areas (with routine precautions in place): one adult caregivers/support persons

• Inpatient Areas (additional precautions in place): one adult caregiver/support person

• Primary and Urgent Care: one adult caregiver/support person

• Palliative/end of life: Northern Health says it will accommodate patient and family needs and consult with infection prevention and control

• Outpatient Clinics: one adult caregiver/support person

• Primary and Urgent Care: one adult caregiver/support person

• Long-term care homes: one adult caregivers/support persons

Northern Health also says no visitor who is unwell with fever, cough, runny/stuffy nose, sore throat and/or diarrhea my visit any of the above facilities.

Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or who has been in contact with a person infected with COVID-19 during the previous 14 days must not visit patients/residents in any Northern Health facility or long-term care facility.

Patient navigators will be put in place at entrances of all facilities to ensure visitors are aware of the restrictions.

“We understand the importance of visits from family and loved ones to our patients and long-term care residents, and we appreciate your support in helping to keep everyone safe,” states Northern Health.

Northern Health advises area residents that the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control is the recommended resource for provincial information that is accurate and current. Information is being updated frequently online at bccdc.ca, and individuals are encouraged to check back regularly.

Additionally, to ensure the B.C. health care system is best positioned to respond to COVID-19, the province’s health authorities have been directed to move all hospitals in the province to Outbreak Response Phase 2, as of Monday, March 16.

“This means hospitals will undertake only urgent and emergency procedures and will postpone all non-urgent scheduled surgeries,” according to Northern Health. “Northern Health hospitals will review operating-room capacity daily to prioritize urgent and emergency cases.

“The cancellation of non-urgent (elective) scheduled surgeries will be implemented over the coming days. Our first steps will include a reduction in non-urgent procedures performed at all sites and scheduling of urgent procedures in place of postponed elective surgeries.”

Northern Health says affected patients with upcoming scheduled, elective (non-urgent) procedures or who are awaiting urgent procedures will be contacted in coming days about their procedures.

“These measures will assist our hospitals to redeploy and train essential service health care providers on critical care related to COVID-19, to ensure sufficient medical supplies for patients and staff who need them most, and to further increase capacity to respond to the potential for a surge of COVID-19 patients requiring acute care,” according to Northern Health’s information bulletin.

READ MORE: B.C. hospitals start cancelling elective surgeries in COVID-19 preparations



editor@quesnelobserver.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Letter: Heartened by the work shown by communities

Dr. Paul Stent, acting mayor for the district of Fort St. James writes a letter to residents

Are you ready for bear season?

BC Conservation Officer Service in Vanderhoof says people should take their bird feeders down until next winter.

Better COVID-19 testing results needed in the north

Former senior Northern Health official also wants work camps shut down

Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

‘In moments of crisis, fear is very real and palpable,’ says SFU’s Peter Chow-White

A curfew is being implemented by Nak’azdli Whut’en First Nation

The First Nations community will also be putting up check-points due to COVID-19 concerns

B.C. couple celebrates 61st anniversary through seniors’ home window

Frank and Rena Phillips marked occasion at Nanaimo Seniors Village this week while social distancing

A look at some of the B.C. inventors creating life-saving tools in fight against COVID-19

Groups across B.C. are working together to create what they hope will help people affected by the pandemic

Association launches French-language games, online tools for families learning at home

Games, culture and vocabulary included in new virtual resources

‘There can be no ambiguity’: Travellers brought home to B.C. must self-isolate

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the mandatory isolation must be abided by

55+ BC Games cancelled amid COVID-19 concerns

Greater Victoria set to host 2021 event

BC Hydro offers three-month bill ‘holiday’ for those affected by COVID-19

Industrial customers can defer half of their power bills

Some April Fool’s Day jokes bring much-needed laughter; others tone deaf to COVID-19

Police are warning the public not to use the ongoing pandemic as a punchline

Canada’s 75% wage subsidy is coming, but not for several weeks: finance minister

Subsidy will cost Canada $71 billion, but push down cost of emergency benefit, Morneau said

Call before you dig into spring projects during isolation: BC 1 Call

BC 1 Call gives free checks for utilities in the area of a desired outdoor project

Most Read