The Saskatchewan Health Authority is sounding the alarm over Regina’s ICU capacity as the city battles the third wave of COVID-19.
The SHA says hospitalization numbers continue to grow in the province despite public health measures in place.
Dr. Jeffrey Betcher says they’re seeing a surge in hospitalizations as a result of Easter celebrations.
“As we’re coming into the second week following Easter, we’re seeing the results of large gatherings that may have not been in compliance with those health orders,” said Betcher. “Which is why it’s really important to follow those orders and understand that just because we’re not seeing the effect of today’s actions, in two weeks time, we will.”
While hospital staff may be prepared for a surge in numbers, Betcher says they’re already seeing two patients to a room.
Executive Director of Tertiary Care, Lori Garchinski says people need to realize the toll this pandemic is having on healthcare workers.
“You have no idea what it feels like to walk into an Intensive Care Unit, where every single person is there for the same reason, and the workload that those staff have, caring for the same disease over, and over, and over, and over again,” said Garchinski. “We need people to be changing their behaviours so that we don’t have to run into these problems in the long run.”
Betcher says it’s frustrating to see people ignoring public health guidelines, as he’s not sure how much more hospital staff can take.
“This is real, it’s here, regardless of what you see on social media, it’s putting a strain on our healthcare , it’s putting a strain on those that are working in healthcare,” said Betcher. “I’m particularly concerned about those, like the nursing staff, and how stretched they are, and whether what we’re doing now is going to be sustainable.”
Saskatchewan reported 221 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, 57 of which were located in Regina.