By the end of March, it was becoming clear that Ottawa hospitals were not seeing anything like the numbers that overwhelmed New York hospitals.
“It gave us a period of reassurance and a little more transition time.”
Love, a long-time senior executive at the hospital took on the hospital’s top role mid pandemic, on Canada Day, last year. He replaced retiring CEO Dr. Jack Kitts. But from the start of the pandemic, and before, Love was involved in on-the-ground planning for what was to come.
In the early weeks of the pandemic, growing concern about adequate supplies of PPE had people donating to The Ottawa Hospital and other health and front-line organizations.
“PPE was a real focal point,” said Love.
The Ottawa Hospital began planning to ration supplies if needed and stored used PPE with plans to clean and recycle it if necessary. That never became necessary as the supply chain improved — although other institutions, notably long-term care homes, faced severe shortages during the first wave of the pandemic.
Although masks, gloves and wipes are common hospital supplies, their use during the pandemic has been unprecedented — increasing by 5,000 per cent at The Ottawa Hospital during 2020.
For example, the hospital used 141,643 procedure masks compared to 1,440 in 2019. It also used 71,904 wipes compared with 4,179 a year earlier and 241,466 gloves, compared to 17,301 in 2019.
In addition to branching out to build and operate the biggest COVID testing and assessment centre in the city, The Ottawa Hospital has sent staff to assist struggling long-term care homes and ran the city’s first COVID-19 vaccination clinic.
This content was originally published here.