“It’s really important to note that RVH is very ready for this outbreak,” RVH President says

Janice Skot says that Barrie is prepared after county's first case of COVID-19 is confirmed

“Most importantly: wash your hands,” Janice Skot, President and CEO of Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH), said on Thursday.

Amid concerns growing locally, RVH say it is ready and prepared to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. “It’s really important to note that RVH is very ready for this outbreak,” she said. “In fact, when you come to the emergency department, there is a screening right at the door.”

Related: Simcoe County’s first COVID-19 case; a man in his 40’s, recently returned from Spain, sought treatment at RVH

This confidence comes the same day as the first confirmed COVID-19 case in Barrie. Even in dealing with this first patient on Monday, March 9th, RVH was already prepared with steps in place to minimize or eliminate any potential for it to spread. “For this particular patient on March 9th, when he presented in the evening he was immediately asked to wash his hands and put a mask on,” Skot said.

With these steps in place, there is little need to be concerned. RVH is equipped to respond to any more cases that may come about in the near future swiftly.

“Anyone who needs emergency services should come to our hospital,” she added. “With the screening at the front of the door, people are diverted away if they haven’t answered yes to all the questions.”

On the topic of misinformation, there are plenty of resources where those concerned about the virus can get reliable information. Skot recommends that everyone tune into the official government sources.

“I would encourage the public to be really focusing on the official sites of the Minister of Health, or Public Health Ontario, or the Government of Canada as a source of truthful information,” she said. “That will assist them as they determine their own signs and symptoms.”

Do not waste time worrying, though, if you have legitimate reason to believe you may have the virus. If you have been travelling to affected areas or been around anyone who has, you are encouraged to get tested.

“If you’re not well though, don’t ever hesitate to come to the emergency department. Otherwise self monitor and really become informed about the symptoms and what you can do to protect yourself.”