Jewish General Hospital contending with COVID-19 outbreak

The Jewish General Hospital in Montreal is dealing with two separate instances of patient transmission of COVID-19, and the Douglas Mental Health University Institute in Verdun and Pierre-Boucher hospital on Montreal's South Shore also have outbreaks.

'None of these events were triggered by sick health-care workers,' says JGH spokesperson

At the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the Jewish General Hospital was designated as the main COVID-19 treatment centre in Montreal for acutely ill adult patients. (Charles Contant/CBC)

The Jewish General Hospital in Montreal is dealing with two separate instances of patient transmission of COVID-19, but the regional health authority says both situations are under control.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the CIUSSS Centre-Ouest Montréal, the regional health board which oversees the Jewish General (JGH), said the outbreaks are localized to specific areas of the hospital.

Recently, some hospital staff were dispatched to work at long-term care homes facing outbreaks, but spokesperson Carl Thériault said the transmission inside the hospital is unrelated to the transfer of staff.

"None of these events were triggered by sick health-care workers," said Thériault.

He declined to say where in the hospital the outbreaks occurred, or how many patients are affected, saying the information is confidential.

However, a source inside the hospital said one of the two outbreaks was on the geriatric ward.

The JGH, one of several hospitals designated to treat people stricken COVID-19, is just the latest hospital to experience an outbreak.

There have also been outbreaks at the Lakeshore General, Verdun, Maisonneuve-Rosemont, Santa-Cabrini and Sacré-Coeur hospitals.

Maisonneuve-Rosemont, a hospital in Montreal's east end, has been overwhelmed by the disease, prompting doctors to cancel all surgeries requiring hospitalization this week.

Douglas, Pierre Boucher latest to report infections

Patients and staff of the Douglas Mental Health University Institute in Montreal have also tested positive for COVID-19.

A total of 16 patients and 22 employees have the disease, according to Guillaume Bérubé, a spokesperson for the the CIUSSS de l'Ouest-de-l'Île-de-Montréal, which administers the Douglas.

The CIUSSS has been applying all appropriate safety measures at the institute, he said, and will be screening all patients and staff in the coming days.

Meanwhile, on Montreal's South Shore, public health authorities are investigating an outbreak in Pierre-Boucher hospital after 11 patients outside of hot zones tested positive for COVID-19. Two of those patients were already in intensive care when they contracted the disease.

With files from Sudha Krishnan

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