Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre Transitioning Out of COVID-19 Pandemic Response

Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre
Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre.

Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences (TBRHSC) is outlining the steps that will transition the Hospital out of COVID-19 pandemic response and into a “new normal”.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, TBRHSC has followed guidance from Public Health and the Ministry of Health (MOH), and applied protective measures geared to different response levels. With the stabilization of key health care indicators, and in alignment with provincial direction as well as other hospitals in Ontario, TBRHSC is moving forward with transitioning many pandemic response activities into regular Hospital operations to form a new standard practice.

The first phase of this transition takes effect on Saturday, April 1, 2023.

What is changing?

TBRHSC will be discontinuing the use of the internal Pandemic Response levels and will be basing any response activities on a Normal State — which will reflect our new normal day operations — or a Restricted State — which will only be utilized if there is a need to reinstate protective measures. This means that as of April 1, 2023, our Hospital will no longer be operating under Pandemic Response Level Orange (Restrict).

Secondly, there will no longer be screening booths set up in the main entrance. Passive entrance screening will now be conducted at the entrance, supported by check-in stations with signage, hand sanitizer, and masks. Any person entering our Hospital will need to self-screen and not enter if they are symptomatic. Signage, volunteers and security staff will be on hand to help with any questions.

Finally, our Hospital has updated its policy on Essential Care Partners (ECPs) and Care Partners (CPs) to reflect the transition out of pandemic response. Please connect with your health care team for details. Please note our Hospital will no longer have Care Partner Liaisons as of April 1, 2023, and any concerns will need to be addressed at the Unit Level or through the Patient Advocate by calling (807) 684-6211.

What is staying the same?

Patients and families will continue to access our Hospital through the Main Entrance (6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.) and the Emergency Department (for designated emergency). For patients and ECPs using these services, Labour and Delivery and Renal Doors (6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.) will remain open.

Masking continues to be mandatory while in our Hospital. This means that all patients, ECPs, CPs, staff and any individual coming to TBRHSC will need to wear a mask at all times (unless eating or drinking).

Assessment Centre operations will continue without change.

What is Next?

Hospital leadership will be reviewing Phase 2 of the Transition, which will include masking, eye protection, physical distancing and spacing, and COVID-19 pre-admission swabbing. Any additional changes will be communicated to the public as they become available.