Update on McMaster Children’s Hospital
Hamilton Health Sciences’ McMaster Children’s Hospital (MCH) continues to be under significant pressure and we are implementing every measure possible to meet the care needs of all patients.
This week, the provincial government confirmed permanent funding for two Level-3 intensive care unit beds, and four Level-2 ICU beds that are currently in operation. HHS welcomes this support and the government’s commitment to continued dialogue about the additional, much needed investments in care at MCH.
Other existing measures include:
- opening more inpatient beds
- supporting pediatric patients who require surgery or critical care in adult settings where medically appropriate
- temporarily reducing surgical activity
- asking for staff from across HHS with pediatric experience to support MCH and reassigning a limited number of staff as needed
- expanding physician coverage on pediatric units and the ED
- offering virtual and remote care options
- working with our hospital partners to send patients to regional hospitals with pediatric wards/beds
- supporting patients to attend the HHS Urgent Care Centre instead of the MCH emergency department. The Urgent Care Centre (UCC) at 690 Main Street is open to all ages and can support children and youth with less acute symptoms related to colds and influenza-like illnesses and other minor conditions/injuries.
As of December 12, HHS will also open a Flu, COVID and Cold Clinic at MCH for children and youth. This is in partnership with family physicians and St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton (SJHH). Information about this initiative will be shared separately.
Here are ways our community can help:
- Wear a mask in crowded indoor spaces, including school
- Stay home when sick
- Wash your hands, frequently
- Get all vaccines you are eligible for, including COVID-19 and flu
- Know your healthcare options. You can visit your family doctor for health concerns that can wait a day or more; contact Health Connect Ontario to speak with a registered nurse 24/7 via phone or web chat; or visit an urgent care centre for health concerns that aren’t life-threatening but can’t wait for a doctor’s appointment. Go to needadoc.ca to learn more.
We thank everyone for their patience and understanding, and sincerely appreciate the work of all our staff and physicians to support patients and their families at this very trying time.