THIS EMAIL IS A CORRECTED VERSION FROM ONE SENT EARLIER TODAY. PLEASE DISREGARD THE PREVIOUS EMAIL. THE CORRECTED INFORMATION IS HIGHLIGHTED IN RED.
(Please see the 'ask' at the end of this email).
As the COVID-19 pandemic 3rd wave accelerates we are now having real challenges put before the system. The need to decant patients away from Toronto and Hamilton is resulting in significant transfer plans of large numbers of patients which is already underway.
To give you a focus, the current plan is for approximately 100 patients this week to be transferred to facilities in Ontario Health West. 60 patients will be transferred from Osler to HNHB and WW and 40 patients will be transferred to SW and ESC. It is estimated this will be 6 patients per day into SW and ESC, many of which will need to be accommodated in our local hospitals. This is not inclusive of the required critical care transfers needed, which will also occur.
The mix of patients will be full spectrum -- COVID-19 positive and negative, acute and subacute care -- as the province tries to accommodate the care of as many of its citizens as possible. The vast majority of the COVID-19 positive acute care patients will be in the developing stages of disease with some needing to escalate eventually to critical care. The influx into our local hospitals of many of these patients means that we need physicians to care for them. The accommodations made to date are quickly reaching full capacity and the need to redeploy physicians is imminent and being planned.
All this to say we are looking at now potentially needing clinicians to move out of their normal scope of practice to care for patients.
In the London area, Dr. Adam Dukelow (Chief of Staff, LHSC) and Dr. William Sischek (Integrated VP Medical and Academic Affairs, LHSC & SJHC) are working in concert to facilitate and direct the work which will be done by Dr. Scott McKay (Chair MAC, LHSC) and Dr. Brian Rotenberg (Chair MAC, SJHC) who head up the physician HR redeployment for the London-based hospitals. Dr. Phil Vandewalle, (Chief of Medicine, Middlesex Health Alliance (MHA)) is leading the physicians HR redeployment for MHA.
At present there is NOT a request for Family Physicians to volunteer their time for hospital-based redeployment. However, we are in a day-to-day situation and the landscape could change rapidly. Thus, we are asking for “all hands to be on deck”.
If you feel you are willing and able to be redeployed to one of the hospitals, please be ready to reach out when the call comes out.
FYI, temporary funding for any physicians to be redeployed has been coordinated with the hospital. In addition, LHSC/SJHC Medical Affairs will work to expedite credentialing for anyone who does not have hospital privileges.
Dr. Stephen Wetmore
Chair/Chief, Department of Family Medicine
Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry
Dr. Gordon Schacter
London Middlesex Pandemic Clinical Lead