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Coronavirus: Montreal’s Hôtel-Dieu hospital requisitioned to fight against second wave

In this March 2020 file photo, a security guard wears a protective mask in front of the new COVID-19 clinic at the site of the former Hôtel-Dieu hospital, The hospital is once again welcoming patients. Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020.
In this March 2020 file photo, a security guard wears a protective mask in front of the new COVID-19 clinic at the site of the former Hôtel-Dieu hospital, The hospital is once again welcoming patients. Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020. Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press

As of Tuesday, the Hôtel-Dieu hospital in Montreal is once again receiving patients as the city grapples with a second wave of the novel coronavirus.

The Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM) said the hospital is welcoming patients whose period of care or active rehabilitation has ended but who cannot return or be admitted back into their living environment, be it long-term care residences or seniors’ homes.

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If necessary, the CHUM said the hospital could also accommodate patients with COVID-19 who must be temporarily isolated to protect other residents in their living environment.

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The management of the site will be carried out in collaboration with the CHUM, and two regional health boards, the CIUSSS du Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal and the CIUSSS de l’Est-de-l’Île-de-Montréal.

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All three will provide health care teams needed to ensure patient care, while the CHUM will be responsible for infrastructure which includes the building, equipment and information technology.

The CHUM will also be responsible for adjoining services including food services, security and pharmacies.

The Hôtel-Dieu, the city’s oldest hospital, stopped receiving patients in 2017 after the transfer of its activities to the CHUM’s new facilities.

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The hospital was first reopened in the spring to help support the health network during the pandemic’s first wave. Between the months of April and August, the hospital temporarily housed some 222 patients, including 121 infected with COVID-19.

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In a statement, the CHUM said the opening of the Hôtel-Dieu is being carried out in parallel with regular activities being maintained in each of the three participating establishments, “with the aim of maintaining an optimal range of care and services for patients despite the pandemic.