BCNU: COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalization, ICU capacity levels of great concern

THE province’s COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalization and ICU capacity levels released on Monday afternoon continue to be of great concern to BC Nurses’ Union President Christine Sorensen, who says nurses are at a breaking point as they work through this third wave.

As of Monday, BC is recording 441 people in hospital with COVID-19 and 138 people requiring intensive care support.

“I’ve heard from nurses throughout the weekend who are very worried about how much more strain this province’s health care system can manage,” said Sorensen. “They are worried for their patients and are managing unacceptable and unsafe workloads.”

Capacity challenges have been reported in several of Metro Vancouver’s largest hospitals, including Surrey Memorial, Abbotsford Regional and Royal Columbian Hospital. Last week, modelling projections showed BC could hit a staggering 3,000 new cases a day if contact trends don’t go down.

Sorensen called on the province to implement enhanced measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and the growing pressure on the health care system, including a review of non-urgent surgeries. Given the situation the province is in, the BCNU said it is awaiting what the government will unveil in Tuesday’s provincial budget that addresses the dire need for a health human resource plan, and strategies in managing the province’s nurse shortage.