Dr. Pervez Faruqi, the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance’s (CKHA) Chief of Staff, says the threat of “overwhelming demands” at their hospitals in Wallaceburg and Chatham is real.
Faruqi has delivered a personal message to the community of Chatham-Kent regarding COVID-19 in this video:
CKHA officials say they continue to take daily proactive measures to respond to the developing COVID-19 situation and the organization is asking everyone to do their part to help fight this pandemic.
“No health care system in the world is designed to deal with a pandemic of this magnitude,” Dr. Faruqi stated in a press release.
“I’m here to assure you that we are doing all we can in our preparation to deal with COVID-19, if and when it gets here. We are working hard to increase the capacity at CKHA’S Chatham and Wallaceburg sites to provide necessary care to the population of Chatham-Kent. The threat of overwhelming demands on our hospitals is real, and we need to take necessary measures to reduce the burden.”
CKHA officials say there has been no confirmed case of COVID-19 in the catchment area of Chatham-Kent.
As of March 14, there are over 150,000 confirmed cases worldwide and the number of people infected across the globe is likely much greater than what is reported, CKHA officials say.
This is because not everybody who contracts the virus gets sick.
The vast majority of people experience only mild symptoms and do not get tested, or even need to get tested, CKHA officials added.
“It is going to take more than our health care system alone to fight this pandemic,” Dr. Faruqi stated.
“We are doing our job, and ask that you do your part. Not everyone who gets sick with fever and cough needs to see a doctor. Unnecessary Emergency Room visits distract staff and physicians from caring for those who really need care.”
CKHA officials say if you have fever and cough but otherwise: You are able to breathe reasonably normal, outside of coughing spells; you are able to drink liquids and; you are able to move about your home reasonably normal, you DO NOT need to come to the hospital.
CKHA officials say they are asking people to stay home and isolate themselves for 14 days to prevent the spread of infection and make sure that people maintain adequate hydration.
“A well hydrated body is better able to fight off the infection,” Dr. Faruqi stated.
“I recommend that you drink six to eight ounce cups of water in a day. You can add half a teaspoon of salt and two tablespoons of sugar per liter of water to provide electrolytes if you become dehydrated. Fever and pain can be easily managed at home by taking acetaminophen 500 mg which can be repeated in four to six hours if required. If you are under 65 years of age and there is no history of kidney disease, ibuprofen 400 mg can be safely taken and repeated in six hours if fever persists.”
CKHA officials say if people’s symptoms are more than mild, and they are experiencing difficulty in breathing, they are being asked to seek medical attention immediately.
“Contact your family physician or nurse practitioner who regularly provides medical care,” CKHA officials added.
“If symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 immediately or visit your nearest Emergency Room for assessment and treatment.”
Dr. David Colby, Chatham-Kent’s Medical Officer of Health, ordered various measures on Friday, March 13 to control the spread of COVID-19 and he also declared a local emergency as a result. Details, here & here.
The World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared COVID-19 as a pandemic on Wednesday. Details, here.
For a list of local, cancellations, postponement and further updates, click here.