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Second death connected to COVID-19 outbreak at Royal Inland Hospital

The Kamloops hospital is dealing with three active concurrent outbreaks, with 38 people affected
Royal Inland Hospital
Royal Inland Hospital is in downtown Kamloops, at Columbia Street and Third Avenue.

Another death has been recorded at Royal Inland Hospital as a result of COVID-19 outbreaks act the Kamloops health-care facility.

There are three active, concurrent outbreaks at the hospital, with a total of 38 people affected and a total of two deaths recorded.

The three outbreaks are on units 5 South (declared on Nov. 2), 7 North (declared on Nov. 8) and 6 South (declared on Nov . 10).

The two deaths involve patients on 5 South, though details, such as age, vaccination status and co-morbidities will not be released, with Interior Health citing privacy concerns.

KTW has asked for the vaccination status of all patients and staff infected during the three outbreaks — without linking them to any specific unit — and Interior Health is considering that request.

Of the current 38 cases:

• Unit 5 South has 26 cases — 19 patients and seven staff or others — with two deaths;

• Unit 7 North has four patient cases;

• Unit 6 South has eight patient cases.

Unit 5 South is a medical unit, unit 7 North treats renal and cardiac patients and unit 6 South is a surgical unit.

There have now been six COVID-19 outbreaks at RIH this year and the first time three units have had outbreaks at the same time.

Previous outbreaks occurred in units 6 South and 6 North. Five people have died in outbreaks at RIH this year.

The health authority had maintained throughout outbreaks at RIH that it is safe for people to visit for emergency care.

However that changed on Nov. 10 when Interior Health said only essential visitors 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.