Lanette Siragusa, Manitoba’s health system integration and quality lead, and chief nursing officer for Shared Health, revealed the province’s healthcare capacity continues to be “further stretched” due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
She revealed that ICU occupancy has now reached 92 per cent. There have also been 43 recently cancelled surgeries, some due to staff having to isolate and others in relation to changes made to “protect [staff] in using PPE.”
“We do continue to have beds and equipment and supplies, but our most precious resource right now is our staff,” Siragusa said. “We are seeing, however, that as cases increase in the community they are also increasing among healthcare workers.”
“While the vast majority of our positive healthcare worker cases were contracted outside of work and not in the workplace, there are unavoidable HR challenge that result.”
Since March, there have been 218 positive COVID-19 cases involving staff. At the moment, there are 37 healthcare staff cases in Manitoba, including 32 working in Winnipeg facilities.
Across Winnipeg over the past two week, more than 91,000 hours, or 5.81 per cent, of all hours worked were claimed as sick time by staff within the healthcare system. The five-year average for the same time period is 78,000 hours.