ICU patient transfers to Ontario on hold after this weekend

After this weekend, Saskatchewan will be putting a pause on transferring ICU patients outside of the province.

22 patients have been moved to Ontario so far.

Marlo Pritchard from the Sask. Public Agency says that ICU patient transfers will continue for the next couple of days. “At this point of time again planning transferring two patients a day out until Sunday. We have no plans past Sunday but again we’ll be monitoring it throughout the weekend and adjust if we have to.”

There were a couple of reasons for stopping transfers to Ontario for the time being according to Pritchard. “Ontario indicated earlier around that 30 bed limit for ICU support. We are seeing a reduction in our COVID patients, we are seeing reduction in use of ICU beds again monitoring on a daily basis, we will transfer patients as needed.”

The President and CEO of the Saskatchewan Health Authority, Scott Livingstone says there are plans in place for starting up surgeries and procedures again, once the COVID-19 numbers are low enough and there are fewer patients in ICUs.

He adds with the decrease pressure in ICUs that they been able to restart critical care surgeries. “Folks that require an ICU bed post surgery are slowly starting to receive that surgery within appropriate timeframes and we will continue to look at that one of our measures for COVID capacity moving ahead.”

Livingstone noted surgeries didn’t stop completely, the SHA has maintained about a 50% elective surgery volume throughout this fourth wave of the pandemic.

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