Symptomatic Ottawa hospital workers with COVID-19 may be asked to work in staffing crisis – CBC

‘I don’t know if I could live with myself if I got someone sick,’ says Ottawa nurse

Jan 11, 2022

Ottawa’s largest hospitals say they may call in symptomatic health-care workers with COVID-19 to work should their staffing crisis become dire — a policy move that hospitals across the continent are making amid the Omicron surge, say experts.

An internal document by The Ottawa Hospital dated Jan. 5 outlines its decision-making process for when health-care workers are allowed to work should they be exposed to or have COVID-19.

The hospital states that “if exceptionally critical to operations,” workers who’ve tested positive for COVID-19 may be asked to come into work whether they’re symptomatic or asymptomatic.

If approved on a case-by-case basis, staff must work under its “work self-isolation” measure, which means they’ll have to get tested daily and self-isolate at and outside of work — like eating meals and taking breaks away from colleagues and family, travelling to and from work in a private vehicle or wearing PPE on public transit and staying two metres away from everyone “except when providing direct care.”

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