Sign board at the Houston Health Centre provides instructions for residents wishing entry. (Houston Today photo)

Houston Health Centre restricts access

Part of plan to deal with COVID-19

The Houston Health Centre, along with all other Northern Health Authority facilities, is limiting visitors.

At primary care centres, one adult caregiver/support person is allowed and at long-term care homes one adult caregiver/support person is allowed.

Elsewhere, the health authority, following provincial policy, is cancelling non-urgent and elective surgeries so as to have beds and services available as needed.

Only emergency services will be provided at hospitals.

“To keep our patients, families and staff safe and in keeping with the provincial health officer’s recommendations for social distancing, Northern Health is limiting the number of visitors entering our buildings, effective immediately,” according to an information bulletin sent out yesterday regarding the COVID-19 virus.

•orthern Health also says no visitor who is unwell with fever, cough, runny/stuffy nose, sore throat and/or diarrhea my visit any of the above facilities.

Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or who has been in contact with a person infected with COVID-19 during the previous 14 days must not visit patients/residents in any Northern Health facility or long-term care facility.

Patient navigators will be put in place at entrances of all facilities to ensure visitors are aware of the restrictions.

“We understand the importance of visits from family and loved ones to our patients and long-term care residents, and we appreciate your support in helping to keep everyone safe,” states Northern Health.

Northern Health advises area residents that the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control is the recommended resource for provincial information that is accurate and current. Information is being updated frequently online at bccdc.ca, and individuals are encouraged to check back regularly.

Additionally, to ensure the B.C. health care system is best positioned to respond to COVID-19, the province’s health authorities have been directed to move all hospitals in the province to Outbreak Response Phase 2, as of Monday, March 16.

Northern Health says affected patients with upcoming scheduled, elective (non-urgent) procedures or who are awaiting urgent procedures will be contacted in coming days about their procedures.

“These measures will assist our hospitals to redeploy and train essential service health care providers on critical care related to COVID-19, to ensure sufficient medical supplies for patients and staff who need them most, and to further increase capacity to respond to the potential for a surge of COVID-19 patients requiring acute care,” according to Northern Health’s information bulletin.

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