COVID-19 Outbreak Measures

When an outbreak is declared, LHSC works closely with the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) and our Infection Prevention and Control team to implement the following actions to ensure safe care within the affected units:

  • Monitoring and/or restricting admissions, transfers and discharges
  • Routinely assessing existing patients for signs and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Routine COVID-19 surveillance testing of affected staff and patients
  • Implementing Universal Precautions 
  • Increasing frequency of routine safety and PPE use audits
  • Initiating enhanced equipment and environmental cleaning measures are taken
  • Contact tracing of affected staff and patients completion
  • Temporarily suspending student placements on outbreak units 

The following additional measures are considered to limit COVID-19 outbreaks and keep staff, physicians, patients, and our community safe:

For patients:

  • COVID-19 testing upon admission for all patients admitted to LHSC (including University and Victoria hospitals) 
  • Masking of all admitted adult inpatients at University Hospital and Victoria Hospital  
  • Reducing volumes of non-urgent and non-emergent surgeries and procedures (any patient whose care is impacted will be contacted directly by their care provider) 
  • Reducing ambulatory or outpatient activity to only urgent and emergent appointments, procedures, and diagnostic services. When possible, all other clinic appointments will be rescheduled as virtual appointments (any patient whose care is impacted will be contacted directly by their care provider)
  • Limiting visitors to the hospital
  • Opening beds to provide additional capacity 

For staff and physicians:

  • Cohorting of staff and physicians to a geographic area of work  
  • Initiating enhanced cleaning protocols
  • Initiating enhanced surveillance COVID-19 testing for all staff and physicians 
  • Opening additional break room spaces for staff and physicians to ensure appropriate physical distancing can be maintained while eating
  • Limiting the movement of staff and physicians between units and hospitals
  • Implementing routine safety audits

In some outbreak situations, MLHU will implement additional measures for staff and physicians including but not limited to:

  • Initiating work quarantine
  • Limiting community interaction