On March 14, 2020, a health care worker (HCW) at Sault Area Hospital became a person under investigation for possible exposure to COVID -19.
At this time, we know that a limited number of our staff, physicians, and patients were in contact with this HCW. We want to reassure the community that these individuals have been notified and they are taking all necessary precautions. There is no additional risk to the broader community at this time. SAH continues to work closely with Algoma Public Health as part of the community response to COVID-19. As an organization, we are committed to you, and we are instituting additional systems to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all of our community, staff, physicians and patients.
Sault Area Hospital’s COVID-19 Team continuously assesses the changing landscape and recommendations locally and around the globe, and we are implementing processes as necessary to ensure patient and staff safety. The following additional measures being immediately implemented at Sault Area Hospital include:
SAH is limiting visitors to prevent the spread of any respiratory illness, including COVID-19. People who are unwell or live with someone who is unwell should not visit patients. People who have travelled outside of Canada (including Sault Michigan) should not visit patients. Anyone visiting a patient should always wash or sanitize their hands before and after their visit.
· Effective Monday, March 15, 2020, visiting hours will be restricted to 11:00 am – 8:00 pm. All visitors will be screen at the main entrances. Visitors exhibiting signs of influenza-like illnesses (fever, cough, difficulty breathing, runny nose, or sneezing) will be asked to return home, and self-isolate and will not have access to the hospital. Parking tokens will be provided to visitors who are turned away.
· We are asking the community to limit their visiting. Visitors who are unwell or have travelled outside of Canada (including Sault Michigan), are asked to NOT visit.
· Visitors are encouraged to keep their visit short.
· Inpatient Areas: We are encouraging only one family member/caregiver age 18 or more during regular visiting hours (11 am – 8 pm). Please consult with nursing staff on the units.
· Patients presenting with COVID-19 symptoms are asked to NOT bring any visitors.
· Exceptions will be made in situations involving trauma, end of life.
Reduction of Services
· Ambulatory clinics and non-essential operative procedures have been cancelled by the hospital and will be rescheduled. Patients are being contacted directly by SAH.
· Urgent procedures and diagnostic imaging will continue and there are no cancellations in these departments at this time.
We want to re-emphasize the importance of staying home when ill and using appropriate personal protection equipment.