After the epidemic broke out on Friday, the BC Nurses ’Union said members across the province had expressed concerns about PPE at work.
Dr. Bonnie Henry said on Saturday that she was “reassured” that critical care workers at the hospital have what they need to care for patients without any health risks.
“There was no shortage of PPE. Health care workers in these facilities are not concerned about being able to access what they need to be able to safely care for people with COVID-19 in the ICU, “said Henry.
“This is not a problem associated with this epidemic. One of the important things that we have done around our measures to try to preserve our PPE is to ensure that high-risk settings, such as intensive care units, who care for people with this virus have what they need. “
The cases among healthcare workers at the hospital are a grim reminder that the virus can spread easily and quickly, Henry noted.
“I really want to say that this epidemic reminds us of how pernicious this virus is and how difficult it is to manage it, because we know people can have a very mild illness and may not recognize it in themselves- themselves and this can open up opportunities for them. to distribute widely. It reminds us that this is a very difficult virus to manage, especially when people are very sick. “
The Fraser Health Authority said the hospital had enough PPE and that the facility ensured that everyone who cared for patients was properly equipped.
“There is no evidence of a break in PPE during patient care that led to this epidemic. All personnel wore appropriate PPE and took all appropriate precautions in the care areas. We can also confirm that there is no shortage of PPE at the Abbotsford Regional Hospital, “said the statement.
“The preliminary results of our investigation show that vigilance is required in non-patient care areas. Improved strategies have been implemented to reduce risks in these areas. While this is a difficult time for all of us, we would like to remind everyone to respect the privacy and confidentiality of patients and staff, as identifying occupations in specific units can easily identify those affected. “
Christine Sorensen, president of the BC Nurses ’Union, said on Saturday that she was not entirely reassured.
“We stand by our statement yesterday regarding concerns about the number of cases at Abbotsford Regional Hospital and the appropriate PPE in hospitals across the province. If Dr. Bonnie Henry and Fraser Health say that PPE is adequate, we question the administrative and technical controls put in place to protect staff. The priority for everyone should be the health and safety of staff and the patients they care for, and ensuring that not all health workers are infected with COVID-19. “
The union also said on Saturday that while there were eight cases among hospital staff, only six were definitively linked to the epidemic.
“We are aware that the declared epidemic is limited to six staff members who work in intensive care in the ARH. We are also aware of two other cases that may not be related to the epidemic, among emergency personnel, “said an email.
According to Fraser Health, the epidemic quickly limited to just one unit.