Hospitals in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) have been brought to the brink of collapse under the weight of COVID-19 patients, to the point where some need to go to neighbouring communities including Waterloo Region.
"We brought in two additional patients with COVID yesterday from the GTA who are now receiving care at Grand River Hospital," said Lee Fairclough in an email. "These transfers occurred after we assessed the Regional capacity."
At St. Mary's General Hospital, meantime, five new patients with COVID-19 were admitted Tuesday alone. In total, St. Mary's is caring for 14 patients who are COVID-positive and 10 who are suspected positive. The labour and cost doesn't end there, however. Eight patients who are no longer infectious still require hospital care thanks to the disease.
If all those cases turn out to be positive, that would mean over one in five patients in the hospital's 149 bed capacity are there because of COVID-19.
Still, as long as the hospitals have capacity, we won't see a field hospital like we have in other areas.
"At this moment, we are not triggering a field hospital and we will continue our Regional approach using all available hospital capacity first and if needed, we would trigger alternative settings that might include a field hospital," said Fairclough.
An agreement was reached with the City of Waterloo in May of 2020 to potentially use the RIM Park Sportsplex as a site for that field hospital, should that be needed.