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Interior Health declares COVID-19 outbreak on Kelowna General Hospital unit

Interior Health has declared a COVID-19 outbreak on unit 4B at Kelowna General Hospital. File / Global News

A COVID-19 outbreak has been declared on a unit at Kelowna General Hospital (KGH), Interior Health announced on Monday.

Four patients and one staff member have tested positive for COVID-19 on unit 4B, it said in a press release.

The health authority said its investigation is ongoing and patients with COVID-19 from 4B are being re-located to the COVID unit.

Read more: COVID-19 variant detected at multiple Metro Vancouver schools

“There is no evidence of COVID-19 transmission to other areas of the hospital at this time,” Interior Health stated.

Interior Health is reassuring the public that outbreak control measures are in place.

A team of infection control and communicable disease specialists, along with KGH clinical staff and leaders, are meeting daily to contain the outbreak, it said.

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“The hospital remains safe to attend for appointments and emergency care,” Interior Health wrote.

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“Please continue with any scheduled procedures. Self-isolation or COVID-19 testing is not required after visiting the hospital.”

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The health authority is also reminding the public that socialization must be limited to immediate household bubbles, as per B.C.’s provincial health order.

“Please do not invite friends or extended family to your residence for a visit or gathering,” it said.

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COVID-19 outbreaks have been declared at several hospitals in British Columbia. Most recently, a patient unit at Vancouver General Hospital was affected. 

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Meanwhile, Interior Health declared an outbreak at Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops over on Monday. Two units were impacted.

“We are deeply saddened that four people linked to this COVID-19 outbreak succumbed to their illness,” said Susan Brown, IH president and CEO.

Read more: Coronavirus: 17 cases announced for Interior Health, steady decline in Okanagan continues

“I would like to send our condolences to the loved ones and caregivers of those who passed away, and our sincerest appreciation for the efforts made by the entire hospital community who worked tirelessly to contain the outbreak.”

The virus ripped through the Kamloops hospital, causing dozens of infections.

In total, 69 staff, 36 patients, and four deaths were connected to the outbreak, which was first declared on Jan. 22.

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