People are afraid to go to the hospital here as well, not out of financial worries, fear of catching covid19 is greater than not getting help.
TORONTO -- The Emergency Department is usually one of the busiest areas of any hospital, but now many ERs are full of empty beds, as patients with ailments and injuries unrelated to coronavirus are avoiding hospitals due to pandemic fears. “It’s so strange to walk through an emergency room with so many empty beds,” Dr. Gaurav Puri of Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket told CTV News. Here there are no wheelchairs and all of our rooms are empty.”
There has been a 30- to 40-per-cent drop in patients in many ERs in Canada. “Patients who may need to be coming in to get care … are choosing not (to) because of their fear of getting COVID in hospital,” Puri said. The lights have literally been turned off in some hospital corridors that used to be bustling with activity. “They’re not even staffing it with nurses because there's no patients,” Puri said. “It's eerie. It's definitely eerie.”
Those that do come in to the ER despite their fear of COVID-19 are often coming in almost too late, Puri said. “We're seeing patients who have abdominal pain for a week and they come in and they've got a ruptured appendicitis,” Puri explained.
A new report estimates that there are now more than 11 thousand unoccupied beds in hospitals across Canada, both because of fewer ER visits and the fact that a staggering number of surgeries -- almost 53 thousand -- have been cancelled. “We are still not doing elective cases -- the main surgeries we are doing is emergency cases,” said Puri. “I don’t know what they’re going to do, because it’s pushed everything back and there are certain things that are time sensitive.”
Ontario's health minister estimates that 35 people have died waiting for cardiac surgery. It’s a number that is sure to increase, as thousands of surgeries are delayed with every week that the novel coronavirus crisis continues to monopolize our health care system.
Last edited by SvennoJ - on 30 April 2020
Less traffic and work related incidents also keep ER visits lower, but here's proof covid19 is already killing more people than just from infection.
Today my pool was opened and instead of the usual two guys (father and son) that come to open only the father showed up. His son's own son was scheduled to get his tonsils out beginning of March, which was cancelled. Now he is watching his 3 year old 24/7 since it got to a point where he can stop breathing from the obstruction if laying down the wrong way :(
(Anyway we got the job done while staying 6+ feet apart at all times, never touched the same thing etc)