Pandemic Response Unit to increase Joseph Brant Hospital’s capacity to care for patients during COVID-19

Posted on Monday March 30, 2020

Joseph Brant Hospital is building a temporary Pandemic Response Unit to expand the hospital’s bed capacity in preparation for the anticipated surge of COVID-19 patients. This modular structure is being built on the hospital grounds and connected to the South Tower. It will provide 93 additional beds for patients who require hospitalization and treatment for COVID-19.

“The Pandemic Response Unit is being built as a critical part of our pandemic response plan to meet the heightened care needs of our community and ultimately save lives,” says Eric Vandewall, President & CEO of Joseph Brant Hospital. “We are doing everything we can to care for the people of Burlington to prepare for these unprecedented times.” The Pandemic Response Unit is a collaboration between Joseph Brant Hospital, community-based health care providers, the City of Burlington, and Halton Region.

“The construction of the Pandemic Response Unit will allow the hospital to preserve our critical care and high acuity patient beds for our sickest patients,” states Dr. Ian Preyra, Chief of Staff for Joseph Brant Hospital. “Physicians from the Burlington community are volunteering to provide patient care in the Pandemic Response Unit, treating COVID-19 positive patients with acute care needs who may require oxygen therapy and ongoing monitoring.

“I have confidence in our health care system, and particularly in our healthcare professionals. The Federal government has provided an extra $500 million to provinces to support our health care system. We are also coordinating the procurement of essential equipment to keep our frontline workers safe and working with Canadian industry, including here in Halton, to produce the equipment we need. I want to recognize the efforts of our local hospital. This is a challenging time for everyone, but the measures we are putting in place are extremely important. By staying home and physically distancing ourselves from each other we are keeping our frontline workers, like nurses and doctors safe. We all have a role play to protect ourselves and our community from Covid-19,” states Hon. Karina Gould, Member of Parliament for Burlington.

“On the advice of Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, the Ministry of Health has requested all hospitals implement pandemic plans to help increase capacity as cases of COVID-19 continue to grow. In these unprecedented times, I’m proud of the work the team at Joseph Brant Hospital is doing to ensure they are prepared to serve the people of Burlington by adding capacity,” MPP Jane McKenna reflects. “Thank you to the wonderful doctors, nurses and every employee on the frontlines at Joseph Brant Hospital. You are the real heroes in this crisis.”

“Joseph Brant Hospital’s plan for a Pandemic Response Unit is a critical step in ensuring we have the right resources in place during COVID-19,” said Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr. “This is a difficult time for everyone as we fight this “invisible threat” and I applaud the leadership at Joseph Brant Hospital and all community partners who are working together to support our healthcare workers. It is also important at this time for everyone in our community to practice physical distancing to reduce the burden on our hospital resources,” states Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr.

“I fully support the action Joseph Brant Hospital is taking in preparing for an increase in COVID-19 patients. Our community, including our hospital, needs to plan and prepare for every contingency during this emergency situation,” says Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.