COVID-19

Welcome to Providence Health Care!

We strive to provide the most up-to-date information so you’re prepared for your visit at our site. If you’re looking for more information about the latest COVID-19 updates, please visit the BCCDC’s website.

Coming to our sites? Click the link that best describes your visit:

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VISITING ACUTE CARE FACILITIES

If you’re visiting someone in the following areas:

  • St Paul’s Hospital
  • Mount Saint Joseph Hospital
  • Holy Family Hospital Rehabilitation Unit

Please read our most recent guidelines below:

The acute visitor policy is as follows:

  • Essential and social visitors are now referred to generally as visitors.
  • Visitors are not required to maintain physical distance; however, they should respect personal space between people.
  • Up to two visitors may visit a patient at a time.
  • Patients and visitors are encouraged to work in partnership with care providers to determine how best to coordinate visits (e.g., it may be best to avoid visits during shift change or patient rounds). Patients can refuse to provide consent for a visit and this will be respected.

Vaccination requirement

Effective immediately, all visitors to acute care facilities are required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination (BC Vaccine Card or equivalent).

Visitors who do not demonstrate that they are fully vaccinated will not be able to enter a facility, including passing through the facility to access an outdoor space.

Vaccination requirement does not apply to:

  • Visitors with an approved medical exemption.
  • Children under the age of vaccine eligibility (currently ages 12 and above).
  • The following care settings:
    • Visits to the emergency department and intensive care unit*.
    • Visits for compassionate care including critical illness, palliative care, hospice care and end-of-life**.
    • Visits for pediatric care, labour and delivery (e.g., support persons).
    • Visits paramount to the patient’s physical and mental well-being.
    • Visits to support the patient’s decision-making.

*Emergency rooms and intensive care units are limited to one support person at a time.

**More than two visitors may be allowed for pediatric care, labour and delivery, palliative and end-of-life care.

Masks

All visitors must wear a medical mask when entering and moving around any health care facility, including clinical and non-clinical areas.

All persons accompanying a patient in admitting/waiting areas, including emergency departments, must wear a medical mask. 

Who is exempt from the mask policy?

  • People under 12 years old
  • People unable to wear a mask because of a health condition or physical or mental impairment. 
  • People unable to put on or remove a mask without help from another person. 
  • To accommodate site-specific circumstances (e.g., staff/visitor/patient masking may not be required when eating/drinking at retail food establishments or cafeterias).

Parking

PAY PARKING SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

Pay parking for patients, staff, and visitors at all health authority owned and operated sites, including those of Providence Health Care, is suspended effective April 1, 2020 until further notice.

  • The City of Vancouver is also providing street parking in neighbourhoods near all Vancouver hospitals, including all Providence sites. 
  • St. Paul’s has reserved 46 spaces dedicated for patients and the public - these spots are located along the inside wall, spots 286–299 and 462–495.

 

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ACUTE CARE PATIENTS (INPATIENT AND OUTPATIENT)

If you’re coming to our site for:

  • Diagnostics (ex: MRIs, x-rays, blood work)
  • Outpatient procedures and surgeries
  • Inpatient care

Please read our most recent guidelines below:

All patients must wear a medical mask when entering and moving around a health care facility, including patient transport, except when requested to remove their mask by a health care professional. 

  • Admitted patients must wear a medical mask when they leave their room.
  • Admitted patients will generally not be required to wear a medical mask in their rooms, with exceptions based on a health care professional’s point of care risk assessment.

Who is exempt from the mask policy?

  • People under 12 years old
  • People unable to wear a mask because of a health condition or physical or mental impairment. 
  • People unable to put on or remove a mask without help from another person. 
  • To accommodate site-specific circumstances (e.g., staff/visitor/patient masking may not be required when eating/drinking at retail food establishments or cafeterias).

Please click here for more information on the masking policy.

Parking

PAY PARKING SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

Pay parking for patients, staff, and visitors at all health authority owned and operated sites, including those of Providence Health Care, is suspended effective April 1, 2020 until further notice.

  • The City of Vancouver is also providing street parking in neighbourhoods near all Vancouver hospitals, including all Providence sites. 
  • St. Paul’s has reserved 46 spaces dedicated for patients and the public - these spots are located along the inside wall, spots 286–299 and 462–495.

 

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LONG TERM CARE VISITORS

On January 4, 2022 the Public Health Officer announced updated changes to the Long Term Care visitor restrictions. 

We appreciate your support and patience as we implement this new directive amidst the rise in Covid-19 community cases.

  • As per the announcement from the Public Health Officer on December 21, 2021, all visitors are to undergo rapid testing for Covid-19 prior to their visit starting on January 07, 2022. Currently PHC is offering and strongly recommending visitors test prior to their visit. 
  • Effective this week and in alignment with the roll out of rapid testing for visitors, residents in long term care may receive visits from a single designated social visitor (1 per resident) and continue to receive designated essential visits when approved by site leadership. Specific guidelines for social and essential visitors are described below.
  • It continues to be a requirement that all visitors be vaccinated, with exceptions for those with medical exemptions or end of life visits. Rapid tests will be mandatory for these visitors effective January 7th also.
  • Masks are required at all times during the visit, even when alone with the resident or in a single room.

Vaccine Verification in Long Term Care

As per the Public Health Order and Ministry of Health (MoH) directives, you will now be required to show proof of your vaccination status. This directive supports public health decision making in the event of a COVID-19 exposure in the care home.

When arriving to the care home for your first visit, the screener will ask you to show proof and will document this. You will not be required to show proof at subsequent visits. Your information is confidential and will not be shared with others.

If you are not fully immunized*, or do not show proof, you will be denied entry to the facility. Exceptions related to compassionate care, such as end of life care, will be considered on an individual basis with additional preventative measures required to support visits involving partially or unimmunized individuals.

Visitors who do not demonstrate that they are fully vaccinated may visit outdoors in space that does not require entry to or passage through the facility. Partially or unimmunized visitor are required to follow and adhere to all IPAC requirements, including wearing a medical mask for the duration of their visit.

*Fully Immunized is defined as seven days after receiving the full series of a World Health Organization (WHO) approved COVID-19 vaccine or a combination of approved WHO Vaccines.

How to choose a social visitor:

  • Please identify the designated social visitor (1 per resident) to the site leadership.
  • The designated social visitor is not required to be approved by site leadership.
  • If you need to change the designated social visitor, a reason for changing out the designated visitor is to be communicated to site leadership in advance, ie extenuating circumstances such as illness, etc.

Visiting at our residences (social visitors):

  • Social visits may occur without an appointment or advance notice
  • Social visits may occur in the resident rooms (one visitor per room) or in areas that will allow for adequate physical distancing.
  • There is no time limit for visits but please respect that space is limited and only one visitor is allowed per room. 
  • No social visits will occur during a Covid-19 outbreak.

What is an essential visit?

The BC Centre of Disease Control (BCCDC) defines an essential visit as “an essential need that could not be met in the absence of the essential visit.” This can include:

  • Visits for compassionate reasons including critical illness, palliative care, hospice care, and end of life.
  • Visits paramount to the resident’s physical care and mental well-being (e.g., assistance with feeding, mobility, personal care or communication, assistance by designated representatives for persons with disabilities).
  • Visits for supported decision-making.
  • Visits required to move belongings in/out of a resident’s room.
  • Essential visits shall be limited to one visitor per resident within the facility at a time (except in the case of palliative/end-of-life care). Based on resident needs and at the discretion of the site leadership, there may be more than one essential visitor for some residents – determined on a case by case basis at the discretion of the site leadership. 
  • An essential visit is not a social visit and essential visits are permitted in a care home/residence that has an active COVID-19 outbreak, under guidance and direction from the local medical health officer.

If you have specific questions related to social visiting with your loved one, please connect with the designated care home contact directly.

Visiting Appeal Process

In line with the MoH and the Public Health order, we want to make you aware of the appeal and review process for both essential and social visits in LTC. Should you have a concern regarding a decision relating to visitor status, we encourage you to speak with a clinical care team member or clinical care team leadership at the time of concern. If you are not satisfied with the response, our Resident Care Manager will be involved, providing you a written decision including the rationale.

In the event you are not satisfied with the decision by the care home, you are encouraged to contact Patient Care quality Office (PCQO) at 604-806-8284 or email them at phcpcqo@providencehealth.bc.ca for re-consideration.

In the event you are not satisfied with the response on behalf of PHC, the issue may be escalated to the Provincial Health Officer via PCQO or independently by mail to: Hlth.visitorappeal@gov.bc.ca.

For the updated guidance for long-term care and seniors’ assisted living facilities, visit BC Centre for Disease Control’s website.

Residents of our long-term care facilities and their families can find more information here.

Please note: Visits are not allowed to units if there is an active COVID-19 outbreak - except for compassionate (end-of-life) visits.

All Providence Health Care sites have controlled access protocols in place and all visitors can expect to be asked the reason for their visits and may not gain access to the site, based on the above criteria.

Please see attached document on restrictions and requirements for bringing a care package for a patient.

Parking

PAY PARKING SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

Pay parking for patients, staff, and visitors at all health authority owned and operated sites, including those of Providence Health Care, is suspended effective April 1, 2020 until further notice.

The City of Vancouver is also providing street parking in neighbourhoods near all Vancouver hospitals, including all Providence sites. 

Online Memorial

Providence’s spiritual health practitioners have created an online memorial service intended for anyone who is grieving loss, especially now in a time when social distancing is in place.

Those who are interested can view the on-line memorial at any time or location they wish via this link: https://youtu.be/9hO1xdTeg5g. They can view alone, or if possible, with their household. Friends and family could arrange to view at the same time from far flung places, as a way to gather together for a shared experience.

 

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OUTBREAK UPDATES

LANGARA LONG TERM CARE AND ALDER TERTIARY MENTAL HEALTH UNIT

On Friday January 21, 2022 the COVID-19 outbreak on the Cedar Long Term Care Unit at St. Vincent’s: Langara was declared over by Public Health. Social visits to the unit can now resume.

St. Vincent’s: Langara staff are also currently managing a small number of COVID-19 cases on other units at the site, although the need to call an outbreak is not anticipated. Precautions have been implemented, and Public Health and Providence Health Care are working closely to monitor and manage the situation.

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DONATIONS

All offers of goods and services with respect to the COVID19 response can be emailed to SPFoundation@providencehealth.bc.ca. For monetary donations to the COVID-19 response fund, please visit the St. Paul’s Foundation website. A heartfelt thank you to the many community members and businesses generously offering assistance.