Small outbreak at Sturgeon hospital confined to one patient who was transferred

by Stephen Dafoe

In her daily update, Dr. Deena Hinshaw said AHS was investigating two small hospital outbreaks at the Sturgeon General Hospital and Royal Alex, where Hinshaw said the cases seem to be linked within the facility. Neither investigation is interrelated; however, one case at Edmonton General is linked to Sturgeon General via a patient transfer.

In response to a question sent to AHS Monday afternoon, Morinville News confirmed Tuesday morning that the small outbreak at Sturgeon General Hospital was confined to the one patient, transferred to Edmonton General on the weekend.

“With regards to the Sturgeon outbreak, there is just one patient who has tested positive for COVID-19. That patient was transferred from the Sturgeon to the Edmonton General Hospital’s restorative/sub-acute unit on April 21. So, they are no longer at the Sturgeon,” said Kerry Williamson, Executive Director, Issues Management Communications with Alberta Health Services.

Williamson said the reason that the single case at Sturgeon was considered an outbreak is that the case is under investigation as a possible hospital-acquired case.

“We have had no related cases to date. Following contact tracing there have been no additional patient infections identified,” Williamson said. “There has been a robust response from Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) and Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) with enhanced screening/surveillance for all health care workers, patients and their support person.”

Williamson went on to say that under the guidelines for a COVID-19 outbreak, restrictions are in place in addition to general COVID-19 recommendations. This includes additional environmental cleaning and restrictions on transfers and new admissions.

“There is no increased risk to patients coming to our hospitals,” Williamson said. “Our units continue to be a safe and appropriate place to receive care.”

In her daily briefing Monday, Hinshaw said a quick response to the Sturgeon and Royal Alex cases means that spread of the virus is being prevented.

“Patients and staff are being protected,” Hinshaw said Monday. “It is important to be transparent about these situations so Albertans know we are sharing information as soon as we have it.”

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    • Cora Krywko

      This is where we had some confusion yesterday from Dr. Hinshaw’s briefing.

      Policy has been that a facility will be identified when there are two or more cases at a facility.

      Some city media correctly reported it as one case, but we cannot rely on other news sources for our info, and had to wait until AHS replied to us – thus this morning’s article and the update to yesterday’s numbers piece.

      In our response this morning from AHS, they say this instance is considered an outbreak because “the case is under investigation as a possible hospital-acquired case.”

    • MorinvilleNews.com ugh. They are making a mess out of the reporting. Causing unnecessary fear and conjecture. They said yesterday that again there was over 200 some cases but when you go on Alberta.ca the numbers are totally different. Not sure to believe their “reporting” anymore.

    • Cora Krywko I find often there is a slight discrepency in the numbers between what comes out of people’s mouths and the stats page or other pages of stats within the government site. There is also often a considerable lag between the base info and the localized data, which is most important to our readers specifically.

      Today is day 46 of this coverage and it is tricky some days to make sure we are giving the right numbers. When there is a discrepancy, we typically include the variance.

      All of that said, I would not want to be in the doctor’s shoes or the shoes of those trying to put the info out.

    • Rozanna Moore McConnell if you go to the website for April 27 they only show 120 some cases for that day but on tv it gets reported as over 200. The two don’t match and therefore leads to confusion. It had nothing to do with trust and everything to do with accurate reporting.

    • Alberta.ca showed April 27 at 4696 cases and the day prior shows 4576. That’s a difference of 120 and yet at the briefing it was mentioned that there was 216 new cases.

    • Cora Krywko In our update Sunday, we published 4480 cases. 4480 was the number given on Sunday by the Government of Alberta website and also the email sent to media.

      Yesterday there were 216. 4480+216=4696.

    • MorinvilleNews.com no it’s fine but as a numbers person I need it to make sense in my mind. I also wouldn’t want to be in the shoes of dr hinshaw. I believe she is doing a fantastic job being calm and collected while delivering the details of what’s going on.

    • Cora Krywko The page that you are providing is the one that I mentioned is the one often out of sync with the main page – which has been accurate with a few exceptions.

      The page you list, which is an overview of the deep dive, is often well behind the updated numbers.

      We are numbest people too, which is why we pride ourselves on not only getting the numbers right but also providing some percentage context.

      We’ve been doing this daily for 46 days as of today, and will continue to for as long as we are still able to provide news.

    • They’ve explained repeatedly why it’s called an ‘outbreak’. It’s not about fear – it’s about information and education. Something far to many of you have difficulty with.

    • Dustan McLean the reporting is what I have a problem with and yes it can incite fear in people who are already fearful. And thanks again for your always acerbic tone to your comment. We have had this battle before and I’m so not having it.

  1. What I believe Cora is saying is that the numbers are not matching up. There for not just Morinville News but many others are reporting incorrect calculations making it more than what it actually is.

    • The numbers match up. We follow the numbers daily and report them accordingly from the press briefing and confirm that against the web site, and then again against the news release that follows.

      But we’re not in the lab standing over the government’s shoulder checking the math.

  2. Ya they sent them to the Edmonton General. They should have tested him before sending to a continuing care facility. I hope it doesn’t expand from just him to all the other patients there.

  3. The editor and I are friends… we actually watch the daily update live-stream together 5 days a week. EVERY MorinvilleNews.com update post to date has been published within minutes of the CMOH’s comments on that daily update, and reflects her words accurately. So if there is a conspiracy, it’s somewhere other than the editor’s office.

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