By Mike Anderson

Southlake Regional Health Centre has opened an Assessment Centre for patients advised by a doctor to be tested for COVID-19.

The Assessment Centre is located in the Ambulance Bay next to Southlake’s Emergency Department. Hours of operation are from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

According to Southlake’s website, patients should come to the main entrance of the Emergency Department, where they will be pre-screened by a nurse who will provide further instruction.

Patients sent to the Assessment Centre will be assessed by a physician, who will make a clinical determination if a test is required — not all patients will be tested.

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If a test is required, the patient will be swabbed and the sample sent for processing.

While awaiting results, patients will be given instructions on how to self-isolate at home.

Public Health will contact you to inform you of the result and provide any other necessary information.

According to the website, wait times will depend on the number of tests being performed.

Southlake has also introduced a new visitor policy and reduced visiting hours, they are now 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Only one support person or visitor will be allowed per patient. And, some high-risk areas will not allow any visitors.

In addition, all patients and visitors will be screened before entering the hospital.

They will be asked about recent travel history and if they are experiencing symptoms.

Based on the results of the screening, they may not be allowed in the hospital.

If they require medical attention, they will be directed to Emergency Department or the Assessment Centre.

The hospital has also restricted access to its main campus. Staff, patients and visitors are to enter the hospital via the East Main Entrance.

However, this does not apply to patients going to the Emergency Department (ED), they should continue to use the main ED entrance.

Patients, Visitors must now use only East Main Entrance: Southlake

For more information on Southlake’s new COVID-19 policies and procedures please visit www.southlake.ca

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