First Confirmed Case of Covid-19 at NHH

The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit today confirmed the first positive case of COVID-19 in the region. The affected individual is a woman in her 60s who is a resident of Northumberland County.

The individual was seen at the Northumberland Hills Hospital on Wednesday, March 11 after presenting with symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection and travel to Spain and Portugal. The woman had travelled on Air Transat flight 337 from Lisbon, Portugal to Toronto on March 6, 2020.

The patient was discharged home and remains in self-isolation with follow up from the HKPR District Health Unit. Health Unit nurses have been in contact with the woman and are working with her to identify anyone she may have been in contact with while ill as well as any passengers on that flight who were seated near the woman. If anyone who travelled on Air Transat 337 on that date develops symptoms, they are asked to call their local public health unit.

Northumberland Hills Hospital
Northumberland Hills Hospital

“We have been working very closely with our hospitals and health care providers in anticipation of a local case and pre-emptive measures were in place for this type of situation,” says Dr. Lynn Noseworthy, Medical Officer of Health for the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit. “Staff at NHH had the appropriate measures in place to isolate this woman when she came into the emergency department and there was no risk to anyone else at the hospital at that time.”

With a local case, Dr. Noseworthy says it’s important for people to remember the following to help stop the spread of illness:

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer;
  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose as much as possible;
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands;
  • If you don’t have a tissue, sneeze or cough into your sleeve or arm;
  • Stay home if you or a family member are ill;
  • If you are ill and must visit a healthcare provider, clinic, or hospital emergency department, call ahead or tell them right away when you arrive that you have a respiratory illness and wear a mask while waiting to be seen; and
  • Avoid visiting people in hospitals or long-term care homes if you are sick.

If residents have travelled outside of Canada, they are asked to monitor their health for flu-like symptoms (cough, fever, difficulty breathing) for 14 days. If they have returned from China, Iran or Italy, they are asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

If you have travelled and develop symptoms, here are local options available to you:

  • Contact the Health Unit at 1-866-888-4577, ext. 5020
  • Contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.

If symptoms are severe, call 911 and alert the dispatcher to the potential concern regarding COVID-19 so they can be appropriately prepared.

“NHH anticipates that the need for screening will continue to rise,” said Linda Davis, President and CEO, Northumberland Hills Hospital. “As such, NHH will be opening a new COVID-19 Assessment Centre. We are working toward the opening of this Centre within the next 24 hours and will share further details with our community via local media and our website as this work proceeds. Patients will notice additional active screening enhancements at our entry ways as well as visitor restrictions and we thank everyone in advance for their cooperation and patience as our team works to meet the needs of this rapidly evolving situation.”

Like similar recent reports, the above is verbatim from the Official Press Release.

Over the next few days, any additional cases will be reported on this page.  It seems like this “crisis” is taking over the news.

Links to other relevant articles

  1. Town closes CCC and postpones Municipal events – includes updates on what’s closed in the Town – 12 March 2020
  2. Town of Cobourg Provides update on Protocol re Covid-19 – that is, what are they doing about it and lots of useful links – 11 March 2020
  3. Local Health Teams are prepared for Corona Virus Threat – 31 January 2020 – includes link to update site.
  4. NHH Covid-19 Information page – updated regularly NEW

Status of all Ontario Cases here.

Update from NHH Hospital

14 March 2020

COVID-19 Assessment Centre now available at NHH Hospital

It’s located at the Ambulatory Care Clinic area of NHH at 1000 DePalma Drive, immediately inside the Hospital’s main front entrance. The Centre will be open daily from 8 AM to 8 PM. Hours of operation may change as needed.

The NHH COVID-19 Assessment Centre will screen patients, test (if deemed appropriate) and direct patients to proceed as required.  As of noon on day one, after opening at 8:00 am, already 12 assessments were completed.

The Assessment Centre is for individuals with mild symptoms who have:

1. Returned from international travel AND are displaying symptoms associated with COVID-19, including:

  • fever and/or
  • new or worsening cough

OR

2. Had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days AND are displaying mild symptoms associated with COVID-19, including:

  • fever and/or
  • new or worsening cough

NHH announcement here

Options available for Cobourg residents

  • NEW NHH COVID-19 Assessment Centre – 905-377-7783 (note: available between 8AM and 8PM daily)
  • HKPR District Health Unit – 1-866-888-4577 ext. 5020
  • Telehealth Ontario – 1-866-797-0000

In the event that symptoms are severe, call 911 and alert the dispatcher to the potential concern regarding COVID-19 so they can be appropriately prepared.

Latest Updates

You can now get the latest News of virus cases and closures on this special page.

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Observer

Good to know there are so many among you that haven’t noticed the sea change in where your tax dollars have gone and why life saving services aren’t there when you need them.

Well early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy wealthy and wise – and so to the East Coast tomorrow. Bye all.

Leweez

Glad to see your firefighter pension affords you the chance to travel
Remember, check your fire alarms every six months

Walter Luedtke

comment image

Not enough ICU beds and not enough testing kits.
As global demand for COVID-19 testing kits surges, Ontario has tightened its criteria for who is eligible for the tests.
On Thursday, the province’s Ministry of Health released new guidance for the health sector to follow regarding COVID-19 testing.
Under the new protocols, individuals who travelled outside of the country and are exhibiting symptoms of the disease will no longer be tested because of limited supply of viral nasopharyngeal swabs. These excluded individuals have been defined as “probable” cases under the province’s guidance.
Who will be tested for sure?
Individuals who are still eligible for testing include people with symptoms who are contacts of confirmed cases, those who have been admitted to hospital with acute respiratory illness, health-care workers with symptoms or who are part of an investigation into an institutional outbreak, people living in long-term care homes and retirement homes, and First Nation community members living on reserve.
Source: CTV News

Informed

Anyone think its a good idea to reduce all those overpaid emergency service workers now as alluded to in previous articles from some readers?

Leweez

Don’t recall any conversation regarding doctors or nurses?

Informed

Leweez…are they making house calls?

Leweez

I’m sorry, but I seem to be missing your point

Informed

Leweez ….doctors and nurses wont be the ones that arrive to your house to assess and transport you to the Hospital if you have symptoms of Covid-19.
Its the overstaffed overpaid frontline emergency service worker that arrives if you call 911 and the same ones you gripe about. You know….the same ones that are on the sunshine list you will soon bash!

Leweez

Oh my goodness informed, you need a new pseudonym.
It is a virus not a heart attack

Informed

I will make comment to this remark in 1 month.

Leweez

That’s good, enjoy your time away

Informed

Im not going anywhere

Informed

Tell me if you feel the same way in the morning

Leweez

Well,my,my,informed, doesn’t that sound provocative.
I sure hope your significant other is not reading this😉

Observer

glad to know you are thinking about this seriously Informed.

Informed

Leweez…are you starting to now understand?

Leweez

Nope, I am not hearing of many 911 calls in Cobourg for response for covid 19
Maybe you have more inside info, maybe related to a firefighter?

Observer

Informed – it is about pulling together for emergencies! Visited No Frills for an item not on my provincial travel list – the toilet paper isle was completely empty. Bought a box of kleenex for the trip, saw the $2.00 ones were completely gone. Hope EMP never hits – the human race discourages me. Will drive to the Quebec border tomorrow, rest Ontario side – too bad how Canada too has fallen apart. French – a mist in time – but I do remember a German phrase – translates to I am a foreigner, I do not understand! Shall drive all the way through Quebec, New Brunswick and on to my distination. Overpriced labour thanks to unions – GM – ain’t no more. So how about the public service? Probably all this will be over and gone by the time I return. Perhaps we will have adopted UBER and be spending tax dollars on a convenience for people not wanting to walk to the bus stop.

JimT

It’s more about people not wanting to – or being physically unable to – walk from the bus stop to home carrying a load of groceries and/or other purchases, especially in wretched, miserable and/or slippery conditions.

perplexed

Why not they are the ones with seniority and will be staying home

Informed

Perplexed…Your true colours have be shown

GailR

Thank you John. Extremely valuable information.

perplexed

I agree with Walter
But as the MPP or MP never fallows up on their Photo Op– to see exactly where the funding they have all provided over the years
is actually going and enforce it It just goes out in Raises and more wages etc. Prove me wrong
a in recent news article on 89.7 discussed exactly that with the National head of Health and Nursing . We get funding on specific high attention needs and wants but nothing ever improves not even the Emerg . wait times
Its worth the drive to Oshawa where the informative TV s around every waiting room flash every 10 Mins stating that if you have been here for more than 15 mins. please come back to the counter and see us !

Observer

I agree perplexed Also there are Sanctuary Cities, CEOs of public service making millions with very large severance pay outs, Civil Service – used to be mediocre pay but with promise of job security and pension – in for a penny in for a pound and London Bridge came tumbling down.

On the bright side Sunnybrook Hospital has isolated the cause of the virus – perhaps a vacination is on the way!

Having trouble sleeping, ticking off my items – driving to the East coast come Monday for a couple of months – hope all of you will avoid the virus – and don’t squeeze the Charmin!

Walter Luedtke

comment image

Northumberland Hills Hospital has six intensive care (ICU) beds with ventilators for a County population of 85,500.
That is below the usual figure for Canada with 10 to 12 ICU beds for every 100,000 people.
According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Canada has about half as many intensive-care beds as the average developed country, despite spending 15 per cent more on health care. Globe and Mail
Let’s hope that more ventilator-equipped rooms will become available.
An ICU ventilator unit generally costs less than $10,000; the cost of supplying and equipping a room will be more, but this is not a big buck issue.
Our shortage of critical-care beds and ventilators, and our lack of capacity to handle a pandemic, has been a known problem for years.
So good luck to all of us, especially Seniors and those with ‘underlying health conditions’.

Elaine

Way to start a panic!

Constance Mealing

People need to face reality. If they had we would not have been in this situation. Get your head out of the sand.

Frenchy

I was at No Frills yesterday and almost got run over both in the store and in the parking lot. Heard there was a fight up at Foodland. Those people definitely got their heads out of the sand and placed them firmly up their backsides.

Ken Strauss

There is an excellent article in today’s Boston Globe newspaper regarding the COVID-19 situation in Italy. The article should be required reading for every Canadian. It is not yet too late for Cobourg. See https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/13/opinion/coronavirus-cautionary-tale-italy-dont-do-what-we-did/

Paul Pagnuelo

Very informative and I agree it should be mandatory reading by everyone.

This is not the time to play Russian Roulette with the health and wellbeing of our family, friends, nrighbours and residents. Let’s learn important lessons before it’s too late from countries that have now been forced to shutter completely.

We can beat this but it requires everyone’s co-operation.

JimT

Italy is high on the list of countries with a large percentage of cigarette smokers. China is even higher on the list.
Coincidence? I suspect it’s more than that.

Informed

Relevance?

Observer

You must have the magic touch Ken. I stated last postings I was disappointed it had taken so long to get measures of flight control in. I received so far 2 down votes for stating the same thing. Go figure! And the fact I am not panicking – French got 3 up for stating people panicking and buying extensive supplies.

Observer

The panic has started Elaine – look at the toilet paper isle! The money has been spent elsewhere
instead of on direct services for the public which taxes are supposed to pay for as outlined under post of particularly perplexed and I offered a post on the subject.

Mark

I remember a job in the hospital coming out in mid 2000 where a whole section of emerg area or the area beside emerg could be put into a negative pressure area
This was done to most hospital after SARS

Ken Strauss

From https://www.cobourgmedia.ca/2020/03/breaking-northumberland-hills-hospital-opens-covid-19-assessment-centre/ Offered in addition to the existing resources the COVID-19 Assessment Centre opened today in the Ambulatory Care Clinic area of NHH at 1000 DePalma Drive, immediately inside the main front entrance. The Centre will be open daily from 8 AM to 8 PM. Hours of operation may change as needed. The Centre will provide assessment and testing for individuals of all ages. The Assessment Centre is for individuals with mild symptoms who have: Returned from international travel AND are displaying symptoms associated with COVID-19, including: fever and/or new or worsening cough OR Had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days AND are displaying mild symptoms associated with COVID-19, including: fever and/or new or worsening cough The NHH COVID-19 Assessment Centre will screen patients, test (if deemed appropriate) and direct patients to proceed as required. These directions may be to go home with no action required at this time; home on self-isolation to await a test result; or onward to the NHH Emergency Department for further assessment by the health care team within the ED. Walk-ins to the NHH COVID-19 Assessment Centre are permitted. Individuals may also call the Assessment Centre directly during its 8AM… Read more »

Rational

Mr. Strauss – why would you post information that has already been posted in the same article?

Paul Pagnuelo

I can only speak for myself but I for one was not aware of John’s update.

No need to go into attack mode when people are trying to be helpful. It’s obvious that tempers are on edge for many.

Take a deep breath and thank God you have people in our community who care.

Ken Strauss

My apologies for the duplication; I had missed John’s post.

Informed

Rational….Because he thought he was helping?

Observer

Ken – read about it above in the article but thanks anyway.

Mark

Shouldnt really use the number 85,500,
Campbellford has a hospital,
a person in Brighton will head to Trenton / Belleville
People in Port Hope will go to Peterborough or Bowmanville 😉

Just Wondering

Where are you getting your information on Port Hope residents? Why would they drive 25 or 40 kl when NHH is only 10 kl away? Don’t forget they lost their hospital about the time NHH was built, so they view it as their hospital, not Bowmanville or Peterborough.

Miriam Mutton

Based on what I heard from a number of people from Port Hope at the time their hospital closed, they would head west or north before they headed east to Cobourg. Since that time, an excellent public health centre opened in Port Hope including a walk-in clinic.