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Third active COVID-19 outbreak declared at Royal Inland Hospital

The triple outbreak situation has led to visitor restrictions, with one patient death reported thus far
Royal Inland Hospital
Royal Inland Hospital is in downtown Kamloops, at Columbia Street and Third Avenue.

A third active outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared at Royal Inland Hospital, with unit 6 South joining units 5 South and 7 North on the current list.

Interior Health added the 6 South outbreak to its facility outbreak list on Nov. 10.

The other two outbreaks were declared on Nov. 2 (5 South) and Nov. 8 (7 North).

There has been no word yet on how many people are involved in the newest outbreak.

The situation on 7 North, which treats renal and cardiac patients, involves four patient cases as of Nov. 9. Meanwhile, an outbreak on another medical unit, 5 South, grew to 27 cases as of Nov. 9, including 20 patients and seven staff. There has been one patient death connected to the 5 South outbreak.

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.