Posted: November 26, 2020

Grand River Hospital, in consultation with Region of Waterloo Public Health, has declared an outbreak of COVID-19 on one of its medicine units, 5S, also known as the clinical teaching unit.

Three patients who received care on the 5S unit have now tested positive for COVID-19. Two staff, who provided care to these patients, have also tested positive.

“We have processes in place to identify individuals with symptoms and initiate protocols to reduce the risk of transmission to others,” says Bonnie Camm, Executive Vice President, Clinical Services at Grand River Hospital. “The safety and wellbeing of our patients and hospital team members is our top priority. We will continue to monitor hospital team members and patients from 5S to ensure that all receive the support they need and we have made further enhancements to limit any potential spread.”

Patients who remain on 5S, or who have previously been on 5S and remain in hospital, have all been tested for Covid-19. All results have been negative so far and we expect to receive the remaining test results within the next 24 hours. The hospital is contacting prior patients, as well as staff who may have been at risk of exposure to advise them of the outbreak and provide support as needed. The hospital has also implemented the following precautions on 5S:

  • Enhanced surveillance to identify potential cases and follow-up investigations;
  • More frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces;
  • Cohorting staff as much as possible;
  • Education of patients and families about COVID-19 hospital protocols;
  • Continually reviewing our practices and implementing new measures as required, as part of our ongoing risk assessments;
  • Temporarily closing admissions to the unit;
  • Temporarily suspending in person care partner visits to the unit and working to enhance virtual and phone connections for our patients and families;.
  • Reviewing the need to reduce the number of surgeries back down to our normal levels. We have been operating an additional operating room since early September.

“We wish our staff and patients a safe and full recovery,” says Camm. “We are extremely proud of our hospital team and the care they have provided throughout the pandemic. As continue to deal with the challenges of wave 2 we ask that everyone remain diligent in supporting public health measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19. We will continue to ensure that we have the best practices and measures in place to keep our patients and hospital team safe.”

More information will be provided as the situation develops.

Community members who have concerns about the COVID outbreak can contact Region of Waterloo Public Health at 519-575-4400.

Click here for more information about COVID-19 at Grand River Hospital

For more information, please contact:

Cheryl Evans, Manager, Communications and Engagement

Cell: (226) 749-0689