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Coronavirus: Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay frees up 55 beds for anticipated case increase

The emergency room team at Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay share an important message.
The emergency room team at Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay share an important message. Ross Memorial Hospital

Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay, Ont., has freed up 55 beds to prepare for a potential increase in cases of COVID-19.

On Monday, the hospital said it has been able to discharge many patients who do not require acute care to other facilities, such as long-term care or retirement residences. The result has been 55 more available beds.

If needed, the hospital is also able to open an additional 48 beds by May by repurposing several clinic spaces that are currently closed.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Kawartha Lakes man with no travel or contact history dies of COVID-19

“Should the demand exceed the in-hospital bed capacity, the hospital would implement plans (currently in development with community partners) to open an off-site care setting,” the hospital stated.

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According to the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit, there were 54 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the City of Kawartha Lakes as of Friday. There have also been two dozen deaths, including 26 residents at the Pinecrest Nursing Home in Bobcaygeon.

The hospital has also established a dedicated unit for the care of patients with probable or positive COVID-19. Currently, there are three patients who have tested positive, the hospital stated.

Ross Memorial has assessed 1,607 people and conducted 434 tests for COVID-19 since opening its assessment centre which is staffed by nurses, who will complete a phone assessment and refer the caller for the appropriate next steps, which may include self-monitoring instructions, self-isolation instructions, testing at the hospital’s offsite location (Lindsay Exhibition) or seeking care in the hospital. If referred to the hospital’s assessment centre by Telehealth, public health or other care provider, call 705-328-6217 (phone lines are open 7 days/week, from 8 a.m to 4 p.m.

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“With the testing capacity in Ontario increased, our hospital is now sending tests daily to Kingston General Hospital’s lab, and we’ve consistently received test results back within 24-48 hours,” the hospital stated. “The backlog in tests throughout the province has reduced significantly.”

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Test results can also be found on the province’s new online portal.

The hospital is also closely monitoring its supply of personal protective equipment and providing daily inventory reports to the province.

Donations of unopened, unused surgical masks, N95 respirator masks, gloves and waterproof gowns to support front-line workers can be made by emailing Marc Sorensen or calling 705-324-6111, ext. 8952, to arrange an appointment during regular business hours.

The Ross Memorial Hospital Foundation has also established a special fund, called Heroes at Heart, to support urgent equipment
and technology needs at the hospital. Donations can be made by calling 705-328-6146 or by contacting the foundation online or via email.

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Homemade masks are not being accepted for health-care workers but are an option for patients who are leaving and heading home. Visit the foundation’s website for more details.