Northumberland hills Hospital has announced that non-urgent service volumes are now at or close to pre-pandemic levels and limited in-person visiting has been reinstated. But CEO Linda Davis warns that “visitors are coming into and through the community, and more and more interaction with people outside our immediate households is occurring. Now is the time to be even more vigilant about following public health advice.” There is still a continuing rise in confirmed Covid-19 cases in the region with a total of 31 individuals from Northumberland County now confirmed positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began. This is an increase of seven cases in the last five weeks alone, as of August 25th. However, many services are almost back to normal – see report below.
The Hospital’s announcement summarizes increased services:
Surgical services are now at 90 per cent of pre-COVID-19 activity at NHH (with colonoscopies, cataracts, hernia repairs and selected gynecological procedures all resumed). Diagnostic imaging procedures are now at 75 per cent of pre-COVID-19 activity, including CT exams, MRIs, ultrasounds, x-ray, mammography, nuclear medicine and interventional radiology procedures, like joint injections and pain management and, most recently, bone mineral densitometry and interventional radiology. In-person ambulatory care clinic appointments have resumed where alternate virtual options are not available and in-person community mental health appointments through the Walk-In Counselling Clinic at 1011 Elgin Street West, Cobourg, are continuing to be increased alongside the virtual counselling service initiated when the pandemic was announced.
The temporary COVID-19 Visitor Policy and family presence practices are expected to continue in their current form for at least two more weeks at NHH. Restrictions introduced at the outset of the pandemic were partially relaxed on July 25th. NHH’s current COVID-19 Visitor Policy permits in-person inpatient unit visits for one designated visitor or primary family caregiver identified in advance between 1 pm and 5 pm on weekends and holidays. Essential family caregivers/visitors continue to be permitted, namely visitors to a patient that is dying or very ill; a support for a delivering mother, and; a parent/guardian of a child or primary family caregiver for an individual with special needs.
Virtual visits may be scheduled weekdays by contacting the hospital’s Virtual Visiting Team at 905-372-6811 ext. 3146 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Open daily, 8 am to 4 pm, and accessible through the Emergency Department entrance at NHH, the hospital’s COVID-19 Assessment Centre has, to date, conducted over 10,000 COVID-19 tests, inclusive of our inpatient and outpatient (Assessment Centre) efforts. “Less than one per cent of those we tested have tested positive,” confirmed Davis.
While walk-ins are accepted at the NHH COVID-19 Assessment Centre, NHH strongly recommends calling ahead to the Centre (905-377-7783) to schedule an assessment.
The full announcement from the Hospital is available in the links below.