Tuesday , January 12 2021

Saturated hospitals: patients transferred 175 km away

In addition to the load shedding, including the cancellation of major surgeries, some hospitals have started transferring patients to other facilities to relieve their wards.

• Read also: All developments in the COVID-19 pandemic

“With a saturated system, the slightest increase in cases means that we no longer have room in our hospitals and we have to transfer people,” Dr Gilbert Boucher, intensivist and president of the Association of Quebec emergency medicine specialists.

He said that since last weekend, patients from the Anna-Laberge Hospital located in Châteauguay, Montérégie, have been transferred to Sherbrooke, 175 km away.

“Some patients from the South Shore are sent as far as Saint-Hyacinthe. We hope not to have to transfer some to Quebec or places like that, [éloignés]. This is what makes it difficult at the moment, ”explained Dr. Boucher.

This scenario of transferring patients to more remote regions is also being considered by the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

“Beyond the availability of beds, other factors influence hospital capacity, including the availability of equipment and staff. The ministry assesses, together with the CEOs of the establishments, the situation on a daily basis, and makes sure to be ready for the transfer of patients to their facilities or other facilities, ”the Ministry of Health and Services said on Friday. social media in an email sent to TVA Nouvelles.

The Assistant Deputy Minister for Health, Lucie Opatrny, also underlined it in the press briefing of the authorities Tuesday, the situation in the hospitals being “very critical”.

Despite all the current efforts, if the trend continues, several patients “risk suffering the consequences”, she warned Tuesday.

For example, some may have their kidney transplant or colonoscopy postponed to an unknown date.

Already 140,000 surgeries are waiting to be performed in the province.


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