COVID-19: Quebec hospitals in high demand

The situation is deteriorating in hospitals in the Quebec region as the number of patients admitted with COVID-19 approaches the peaks of the fifth wave and as emergency rooms are also heavily used.

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After a lull, hospitalizations have been rising steadily for three weeks in the Capitale-Nationale. As of Tuesday, 246 people were bedridden with COVID-19, close to the record of 266 hospitalizations reached on January 24.

However, the number of people in intensive care is almost half as high, a sign that the challenges of this new wave are different.

High workload

The Chaudière-Appalaches region, on Monday, experienced its highest number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 during the pandemic, 130. Among them, only one person was in intensive care.

Even if a proportion of these patients receive care for a problem other than the coronavirus, “having a significant number of patients requesting the application and management of particular measures places a great strain on the care and medical teams”, affirms Mireille Gaudreau, spokesperson for the CISSS of Chaudière-Appalaches.

The workload is high, especially since a significant number of workers are in isolation, she adds.

At the same time, the capacity of emergencies is exceeded in many establishments, with an occupation which reached for example 116% at the Hôpital de l’Enfant-Jésus, and 138% at the Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis, today. .

No more shedding

Despite this, “there is very little additional load shedding” so far, according to Michèle Schaffner-Junius, public affairs advisor at the CHU de Québec. “We modulate our day-to-day activities to avoid it. Our activity levels are similar to those communicated last March,” she said.

At the CIUSSS de la Capitale-Nationale, the Dr Jacques Girard, medical assistant to the regional director of public health, speaks of a situation that is not alarming for the moment, in particular because 66% of the inhabitants of the region have received the booster dose of the vaccine or have made an appointment. you to receive it, more than the provincial average of 62%.

But it will be necessary to exercise judgment for the gatherings of the long Easter holiday, he invites. “The watchword is that if you’re in the slightest bit symptomatic, maybe try postponing your family reunion. »

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