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COVID-19 hospitalizations push CHEO to accept adult patients in ‘unprecedented’ move

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The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) in Ottawa will accept young adult patients for the first time in its nearly 50-year history amid overwhelming hospitalizations related to the COVID-19 pandemic in Ontario.

CHEO said Tuesday it is readying intensive care beds and staffing to prepare to accept young adults requiring critical care.

The move is in anticipation of adult-care hospitals in Ottawa hitting capacity with record numbers of COVID-19 patients.

Read more: Ontario works to create more critical care beds in hospitals as COVID-19 cases surge

Rather than transfer patients to other areas of the province or country, CHEO says it is opening up bed space to keep them local.

“This is unprecedented in CHEO’s 47-year history and reflects how serious the third wave of the pandemic is,” CHEO chief executive Alex Munter said in a statement. “We need to do everything we can to stop the uncontrolled spread that is making so many people ill.”

The move would open care at CHEO to those aged approximately 40 and younger.

More to come.

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