Ambulatory Care adjust for expected surge of COVID+ patients

Our Ambulatory Care department sees patients who are coming in for elective medical and surgical procedures, fracture follow-up, wound care and cancer treatments. On an average month before COVID the department would typically see about 2,700 patients.

As elective programs and services across the province were cancelled in mid-March, staff teamed up with referring doctor’s offices to individually contact all the affected patients. Only urgent and cancer patients would continue to receive care. The need was to clear out the Hospital for the expected surge of COVID+ patients.

All of the care and procedure areas were adjusted to allow for better physical distancing. Chairs were removed from waiting areas, curtains were added where possible and all urgent/emergent and cancer-related appointments were spaced out to limit patient and staff traffic. The team spent many hours on the phone providing patients with reassurance and support for those who had appointments cancelled and for those who were afraid to come in for much needed care.

As services at Guelph General Hospital begin to ramp up, the team has been spending a lot of time planning out how to stagger appointments to allow for safe entering and exiting without crowding. Care and services provided in Ambulatory Care are under review and we are exploring ways to do things a little different to keep our patients and staff safe during the pandemic.

Know that you will be in great hands should you need to come in to Ambulatory Care. This team puts the patient first in all they do, including COVID protocols now. We are so lucky to have these amazing caregivers at Guelph General Hospital.

This story originated on Guelph General Hospital’s Facebook page on August 11th, 2020 as part of its #behindthemask series to share how the Hospital is working hard to protect patients and visitors from #COVID19.