Of the 36 patients who have tested positive in the four concurrent COVID-19 outbreaks at Royal Inland Hospital, 31 were fully immunized, two were partially immunized and three were not vaccinated.
The patients are in the hospital for non-COVID-19-related issues and are not patients in the hospital’s COVID-19 units, where vaccination rates are “extraordinary lower,” according to Interior Health in communication with KTW.
Interior Health said that of the 36 people who were in RIH when they contracted COVID-19, three are in critical care as of Monday, with the vast majority of cases being mild and discovered through asymptomatic testing.
“Fortunately, these statistics demonstrate how the COVID-19 vaccine can prevent severe illness and death,” Interior Health told KTW.
“We are also fortunate to have very few deaths related to this outbreak due to the high vaccination uptake.”
As of Monday, there have been a total of 45 cases connected to the quartet of outbreaks — 36 patients and nine RIH staff members.
There have been three deaths, though whether the deceased were vaccinated or had co-morbidities has not been revealed, due to privacy concerns.
The outbreaks are on unit 5 South (medical ward, declared on Nov. 2), unit 7 North (renal/cardiac ward, declared on Nov. 8), unit 6 South (surgical ward, declared on Nov. 10) and unit 5 North (stroke/rehab ward, declared on Nov. 13).
The health authority had maintained throughout outbreaks at RIH that it is safe for people to visit patients.
However that changed on Nov. 10 when Interior Health said only essential visitors for patients are permitted at Royal Inland Hospital. Essential visitors include:
• Visits for compassionate care: including critical illness, palliative care, hospice care, end-of-life and medical assistance in dying;
• Visits to patients in the emergency department or intensive care unit;
• Visits for pediatric care, labour and delivery;
• Visits necessary to support a patient’s physical care (such as help with feeding or mobility), mental well-being or decision-making.
Interior Health said all services continue to be available at RIH, adding that the hospital remains safe to visit for anyone needing emergency care.
A full list of facility, community and school outbreaks can be found online at interiorhealth.ca.