Hospitals remain at risk of overflowing, health minister warns

Record Staff
Hospitals remain at risk of overflowing, health minister warns
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Nearly 65 per cent of CHSLD residents have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine since the vaccination process began a month ago.
According to Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé, the vaccine has been administered to 115,704 Quebecers. During a press briefing, he also announced a daily vaccination campaign update. He was joined by Daniel Paré, director of the campaign, and Dr. Richard Massé.
The vaccination update will be released every day around 1 p.m. at qué In a press release, the Quebec government noted 25,799 out of roughly 40,000 CHSLD residents received a vaccine, as well as 85,167 members of the province’s nursing staff.
Prior to the press briefing, health experts discussed when to give out the second dose. They recommended the second dose of the vaccine be given out approximately 42 to 90 days later. The goal is to reduce pressure on Quebec’s health care system.
According to the Institut national d’excellence en santé et en services sociaux (INESSS), there is a real risk that Montreal’s health network will exceed capacity over the next three weeks. More than 80 per cent of regular and intensive care beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients.
However, the INESSS also pointed out a six per cent decrease in new cases. In a press release, the organization notes the decrease runs through most age groups, with the exception of people 70 years old and over, which saw a five per cent increase.
The INESSS also said that 75 per cent of new cases are coming from Montreal residents or neighbouring regions, considered zone 1. The projections are based on data collected up to Jan. 10. For other regions, considered zone 2, new hospitalizations are down.
Zone 2 shows nearly 60 per cent of regular beds and 30 per cent of intensive care beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients. While the risk of a major increase remains low, the INESSS suggests overflow in some hospitals cannot be ruled out.
Quebecers need to continue respecting health measures, Dubé stressed, in order to avoid a dangerous situation in the health network and for the entire population. Although he added that he is pleased with the rollout of vaccines.
“Over the past few weeks, our teams have eloquently demonstrated that Québec is able to vaccinate a large number of people quickly, safely and in an orderly fashion,” said Dubé.
The government’s objective is to distribute the vaccines at an optimal pace, the health minister continued, in an effort to reach as many people as possible. But just because the vaccine exists, it doesn’t mean people can become complacent, he warned.
“We must remain extremely vigilant and continue to respect the health measures in place,” said Dubé.
According to the Quebec government, there were 2,132 new cases, bringing the total to 236,827 people infected with COVID-19. They also reported 64 new deaths, which amounts to a total of 8,878 deaths, as well as seven new hospitalizations, for a total of 1,523.
In the Eastern Townships, the CIUSSS de l’Estrie – CHUS reported 95 new cases in the region. They also confirmed two new deaths — one at the Hôpital et centre d’hébergement Argyll (RLS de Sherbrooke), another at the RPA Les Jardins de Pinecroft (RLS de Memphrémagog).
The Townships’ local health authority also updated its website to include the amount of beds occupied by COVID-19 patients. There are 73 confirmed hospitalizations out of 79 beds dedicated to Covid, and 14 people in intensive care out of 25 available beds.

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