/HHHS increases long-term care precautions 

HHHS increases long-term care precautions 

By Jenn Watt

Highlands Health Services moved to seal its long-term care units from
the adjoining hospital facilities in both Minden and Haliburton last
week, creating additional protection for the residents and staff.
walls, separate entrances, break rooms and change rooms have been added
and work flows changed so that staff and essential visitors are not
moving between the distinct sections of the building.
“All of this
work – and it has been a considerable amount – has been done in an
effort to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 from the emergency
and acute areas to our more vulnerable long-term care residents,”
Carolyn Plummer, CEO and president of HHHS, said in a community update
dated April 24.
Residents and staff at Hyland Crest in Minden and
Highland Wood in Haliburton have their temperatures taken twice a day
and Plummer said physical distancing and personal protective equipment
is also used.
“We are also moving forward with increased testing for
every long-term care resident and staff member, as mandated [last] week
by the government of Ontario,” she said.
As was previously
reported, HHHS moved to limit where staff at its long-term care homes
could work as of late March. The province has since issued an order that
staff at those homes only work at one location to limit the potential
spread of the virus.
Plummer also used her weekly update to urge
those who need medical attention, whether COVID-19 related or not, to
continue to come to HHHS.
“HHHS and our local health-care partners
have been working diligently to ensure that we can manage the COVID-19
pandemic while still providing high-quality health-care services to the
community,” she said. “Please do not ignore any health issues you may be
having, and seek regular care when needed.”
The provincial online
self-assessment has broadened the range of symptoms associated with the
coronavirus, to include hoarse voice, runny nose, loss of taste or
smell, headaches, digestive issues and fatigue. Those completing the
assessment online may be prompted to visit an assessment centre and
there is one in Haliburton. Go to Ontario.ca/coronavirus or call
1-866-767-0000 for the assessment. If prompted to go to an assessment
centre, you must first make an appointment at the Haliburton Family
Medical Centre at 705-457-1212 and press 6.