As Ontario deals with the pandemic’s sixth wave our local hospital is urging the public to keep up personal protective health measures.
Dr. Will Smith, West Parry Sound Health Centre’s Chief of Medical Staff, says the truth is that Ontario is well into wave six of the pandemic. “I think all of us hoped that wave six would occur later in the year and maybe give us a little break until after the summer but the reality is it’s here and it’s here now,” he says.
Smith says hospitalization numbers are on the rise right across the province, up about 40 percent week-over-week, with reports of ICU numbers also rising.
“Here in Parry Sound, our hospital has been at or above 100 percent for the last few weeks. So we are basically dealing with a full house here. We have been able to fill all of our shifts, although it has been a challenge,” says Dr. Smith.
He says the centre, just like everybody else in the community, had a number of staff off, with active COVID-19, since January.
“It does make it a challenge every single day for managers to fill all those slots and keep all our beds open. Right now we are able to do that but I can tell you it’s a day-to-day challenge for us.” he says. Smith adds the centre would certainly appreciate everybody taking up local Public Health advise, in terms of lowering risk, enjoying the outdoors and trying to avoid those crowded indoor scenarios.
“We need to keep our numbers down. There is just not a lot of extra space at the hospital. If you really need us we will make space but every time we have to make space it does mean that somebody else has a more challenging access to the hospital.” Smith says.
He says the aim is to keep the hospital open for everybody adding the centre appreciates everything Parry Sounders did and will do to “help keep us all safe”.