VANCOUVER — Testing patients for COVID-19 before their scheduled surgery and transfer to wards from emergency departments could reduce hospital outbreaks in British Columbia as cases rise, the results of a pilot project in the province’s largest health authority suggest.
Fraser Health said that out of 5,681 patients who were booked for surgery, 65 tested positive for the virus but had no symptoms and would not have warranted a test based on a screening questionnaire. Of 2,969 patients booked for elective surgery, 11 were infected with the virus but were asymptomatic.
They include two units at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, as well as the Cardiac Care Intensive Care Unit, all of which are closed to new admissions and transfers.
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