Second unit closed at St. Boniface Hospital due to COVID-19 outbreak

WINNIPEG — St. Boniface Hospital has closed down a second unit in the facility due to an ongoing outbreak of COVID-19.

On the hospital’s website, it said 11 patients have tested positive for COVID along with five staff members.

“All potential contacts between October 5 and October 20 are being traced so that they can self-isolate and, if necessary, be tested as we investigate the origins of the transmission,” the hospital said on its website.

The hospital said the E5 unit is now closed to new admissions and this comes after the E6 unit was shut down because of two cases on Friday.

READ MORE: COVID-19 outbreak at St. Boniface Hospital

Debbie Boissonneault with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), said 13 workers that the union represents will be getting rapid testing to determine if they have COVID or not, and she added this is very concerning.

“You can look at a chart and it says ‘who works in this department today’ but there’s lots of people that flow through a department. Somebody bringing a patient that maybe came from a different area, picking up a different patient. A transporter, a housekeeper, a laundry aide. Anybody transferring through a department can be carrying (COVID-19) with them if they had it,” said Boissonneault. “So it’s concerning when just on Friday and then all of sudden we are hearing yesterday the floor below.”

She added she is happy to see the hospital is testing people as this is happening.

The hospital said in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19, no new patients will be allowed in either unit and there are restrictions on visits to those units. The hospital is encouraging families to do virtual visits.

The hospital will remain and clinics and procedures will continue.

“We are doing all that we can to contain transmission of COVID-19. Our efforts continue to keep patients, employees, and our community safe,” the hospital said.

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