Ontario’s first field hospital for COVID-19 patients opens in Burlington

The first field hospital in Ontario was constructed outside Joseph Brant Hospital in Burlington to help control a large surge of COVID-19 cases that have overwhelmed health-care systems in the area.

Patients started to be transported to the facility on Tuesday after it opened its doors on Monday. Hospital officials have been working to identify people who can be moved into the new field hospital.

Hospital CEO Eric Vandewall said that they believed it was time to use the 73-bed all-season facility, that was constructed in April, in order to keep scheduled surgeries and important services running while care units reach capacity.

COVID-19 has put increased stress on health care units in Hamilton, Burlington, Niagara, Haldimand, and Brant.

Although the additional facility might take some patients out of the hospitals, the field unit is incredibly understaffed with only enough employees to use 30 beds. And there are plans to increase capacity over the next few weeks.

Family doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, and community care workers are some of those who are staffing the field unit. A call was put out for nurses to help with vaccination efforts as well. 

Lead image courtesy of @Jo_Brant.

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