Five Regional Hospital Partners Approved to Begin Ramping Up Non-Urgent Care

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Campbellford Memorial Hospital (CMH), Haliburton Highlands Health Services (HHHS), Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH), Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) and Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) have now received formal approval from Ontario Health (OH) to move forward with a regional plan to begin resuming non-urgent surgeries, procedures and tests.
On March 19, under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the government of Ontario directed all acute care hospitals to ramp down elective surgeries and non-urgent activities in order to preserve system capacity to deal effectively with COVID-19.

With provincial approval now received to proceed, the five partner hospitals will implement a staged plan beginning in early June that will allow each hospital to increase and decrease the amount of non-urgent care provided as circumstances allow.

Non-urgent care at each hospital will be resumed in a gradual, phased manner. It will be necessary to prioritize the most urgent patients, and at times, we may need to scale back on non-urgent care volumes again as COVID-19 activity in the region fluctuates.

As we ramp up, we will continue to partner with local public health officials to carefully monitor the level of disease activity in our communities and region. We will also be monitoring the sustainability of our supply chains, volumes of activity at each hospital, and the capacity of our community partners to support acute care, working together to meet the needs of our patients while keeping everyone safe.

We will also continue to monitor each patient’s clinical urgency and health status while they wait for their surgery, procedure or test. As the ramp-up begins at each hospital, some patients will need to be prioritized while others will continue to wait. We are working hard to resume non-urgent care as quickly as possible.

Patients should continue to communicate with their physician’s office while they wait for their surgery, procedure or test to be rescheduled. If you are a patient waiting for non-urgent hospital care and your symptoms change during this time, please let your doctor know.

“We recognize the impact the pandemic has had on patients waiting for elective procedures, and we thank everyone for their continued understanding, patience and support as we work through these unprecedented times,” said Linda Davis, Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH) President and CEO. “We are very pleased to now meet the conditions established by the province to begin resuming elective care at NHH. It is essential, however, that we do this gradually, using a measured and staged approach, while maintaining the flexibility to reduce services as quickly as possible should we need to support a sudden increase of COVID-19 cases in our community. Our team will monitor any change in local COVID-19 cases, as well as the capacity of our community partners, such as home and community care, and continue with virtual service offerings where appropriate until all elective NHH services can be brought back to their full capacity. These details will follow as plans are finalized.”

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

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