Service Changes

LHSC remains open and it is important that you do not delay seeking care for any urgent or emergent needs. If you have an emergency or serious medical injuries and conditions: Call 911 or go to an Emergency Department.

Patients coming in for scheduled services are health screened at the door and those with a suspected case of COVID-19 are separated from other patients. A number of protocols are being followed to protect the health and safety of our staff, physicians, and patients and families. 

Please help us keep LHSC safe.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our OR capacity has been significantly impacted, which has resulted in longer wait times. If you have experienced a change in your medical condition, please contact your care team to arrange clinical re-assessment. For any other concerns, please contact Patient Relations.

Changes to clinical services for patients

Throughout the pandemic, LHSC continues to provide urgent and emergency care for all patients. Essential health services such as trauma, stroke, urgent cardiac care, transplant, and the birthing centre continue to be provided to our patients.

The hospital may need to implement service reductions at times in an effort to preserve clinical capacity to respond to an increase in patients with COVID-19 and reduce community transmission of the virus. These services changes will be made in accordance with government directives or instructions issued by the Middlesex-London Health Unit. We appreciate your patience during this challenging time. 

Your care team will reach out directly to you as soon as possible if they need to make changes to your scheduled appointments or procedures. 

Update – April 9, 2021

With increasing COVID-19 cases and community transmission across the province, Ontario is making every effort to ensure that hospitals can continue to care for critically ill patients. As a result, hospitals have been directed by Ontario Health to start ramping down care that is considered non-emergent or non-urgent.  

Starting on Monday, April 12, LHSC is required to postpone surgeries for some of our patients. These patients are being notified directly by their care teams. If a patient is not contacted, their surgery is proceeding as scheduled.  

Go to LHSC COVID-19 Outbreak Information for details on any active outbreaks and resulting changes for patients. 

When visiting the hospital, patients and families will have a different experience than they might anticipate. This includes screening at our doors, physical distancing measures, visitor policies, and changes to some of our processes as we strive to keep everyone safe. 

Scheduled surgeries, procedures and appointments

We recognize that changes in our service delivery cause uncertainty for our patients and their loved ones, and waiting for care can be difficult. 

Any patient whose appointment or procedure is impacted by service changes will receive direct communication from their health-care team to discuss their ongoing care plan. Patients will be notified of opportunities to reschedule procedures and other appointments as soon as possible. 

Some hospital appointments may be offered as virtual care visits or you may be asked to go to another health-care facility. A virtual visit means the doctor will connect using telephone and/or video (if appropriate) instead of a face-to-face visit. See Virtual Care at LHSC for more information.

Ongoing care

All treatment decisions about your care are being carefully reviewed by your health-care team and they will continue to monitor your care closely. We remain committed to protecting the health and safety of our patients.

If you have concerns, including new or worsening symptoms, please reach out to your physician or other members of your health-care team directly. Call 911 immediately or go to an Emergency Department If you have an emergency or serious medical injuries and conditions. We will be here when you need us.

Patient Cohorting and Care in Non-Traditional Locations

LHSC remains committed to providing high quality care and protecting the health and safety of patients, families, staff, physicians and the community. Given this, LHSC has decided to cohort COVID-19 patients and create patient care spaces in non-traditional locations. For more information, please read this document.

Transfer of patients

COVID-19 hospitalizations are continuing to increase across Ontario and within our Ontario Health (OH) West region. Many hospitals in our region are at or above capacity despite some having opened surge beds. This has necessitated the transfer of patients between hospitals, including to and from LHSC, to balance capacity in the health-care system. 

Hospitals across Ontario are working in partnership to provide excellent patient care while balancing capacity. LHSC, along with partners from across the region and the province, continues to plan for the management of a surge in COVID-19 patients and the implementation of any needed escalating response actions will be determined by overall capacity pressures at the local, regional, and provincial health-system levels.

Patients being transferred from LHSC to a partner hospital

Patients admitted at LHSC are assessed daily to understand what supports they will need to transfer to the next level of care or be discharged home. In order to maintain critical capacity during this unprecedented time, LHSC is working with other acute care hospitals in our region to support the transfer of LHSC patients that need ongoing hospitalization but whose care needs can be met in other hospitals in the region. Transferring patients to other hospitals is something that LHSC does routinely and follows a well-established process. Patients' care teams will advise if transfer is necessary. Transportation arrangements and costs will be managed by LHSC.