Interior Health says it is making changes to long-term care and community programs and services to protect those vulnerable to COVID-19 and address potential pressures on the acute care system.
IH announced the changes Saturday.
- Temporarily suspending inter-facility transfers (moving individuals from one care home to another), except in circumstances of intolerable risk. Clients’ place on the waitlist for transfer will not be impacted by this change
- Prioritizing admissions to long term care from acute care over those from community where possible
- Temporarily suspending all adult day programs.
- Temporarily suspending in-facility respite care, except in circumstances of intolerable risk and for those who require palliative (end of life) care.
“These changes will enable health care staff to focus on increased surveillance and infection prevention protocols and prevent the spread of COVID-19 to our vulnerable seniors,” IH said in a news release.
Current clients will be contacted directly by Interior Health staff to discuss alternate services and supports where appropriate.
With all other B.C. regional health authorities, IH added it is restricting visitors in long-term care to essential visits only.
27 positive cases of COVID-19 have been identified in the Interior Health Authority.
“As of March 21, Interior Health has no COVID-19 outbreaks in our long-term care homes,” IH said. “COVID-19 testing is currently included in all testing done for respiratory illness in long-term care facilities.”