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Coronavirus: Health-care worker at Kingston General Hospital tests positive for COVID-19

Paul Soucy/Global News

Kingston Health Sciences Centre (KHSC) has confirmed that a health-care worker at its Kingston General Hospital site has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

“Keeping our staff and patients safe is our top priority,” says Dr. David Pichora, KHSC’s president and CEO.

“We are working with our colleagues at KFL&A Public Health to determine where and when the staff person may have gotten the infection and help identify the person’s close contacts. Through contact tracing, anyone who may be at risk of contracting the virus through this case will be notified by KFL&A Public Health.”

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At this point in time, an investigation into the positive test result, conducted by KHSC, suggests this was not a work-related infection. Officials confirm the staff member is at home recovering in self-isolation.

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KHSC has implemented a number of infection prevention and control precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Since March 16, KHSC has required all staff to use dedicated entrances to its sites, where they must pass screening in order to enter. As per updated recommendations made by Ontario’s chief medical officer of health on March 19, health-care workers have been advised to self-isolate for 14 days following international travel.

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Also on March 16, through its onsite lab, KHSC started testing health-care workers who meet testing criteria. Results are provided within 24 hours maximum.

Even though personal protective equipment is in short supply across the province and the country, Dr. Pichora says KHSC has “been careful in its use of PPE and has ensured staff members have what they need, when they need it.”