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Pediatric Admissions Con’t To Rise At The Regional Hospital

By Katie Nicholls Nov 24, 2022 | 10:33 AM

Kelly Sikkema / Unsplash

As cold and flu season continues, the regional hospital is noticing an uptick in children admitted to the hospital.

Acadia News spoke with Dr. Bradley Jacobson, who is the Chief of Staff at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC).

He talked about the “significant amount of stress being felt at the regional, especially in the pediatric unit”. Jacobson detailed that not only are local patients coming to the hospital but regional ones are being flown in as well and they’ve been typically younger children.

Jacobson and staff have dubbed this season to have the “three-headed monster”; meaning there have been increased cases of Covid-19, influenza and RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) with many patients being diagnosed with co-infections. It’s not only affecting children but also seniors, hitting both extremes of age.

The province has asked acute care hospitals, like Thunder Bay’s, to increase capacity to close to 150 per cent in some units. TBRHSC is over 100 per cent at this point, but not quite at its extended capacity yet. Typically there are 12 patient beds in the pediatric unit, the expectation from the province is that they will expand to 18 beds.

As a regional hospital, they’ve enhanced their roster with more specially trained pediatric nurses, more respiratory therapists, as well as pediatricians are providing additional support at the hospital and in the region to manage the increased demand.

Many patients are coming into the Emergency Department with febrile symptoms (sweating/chills and shivering/headache/muscle aches/general weakness), combined with increased patient volumes as well as rising exposures and infections; expect to wait longer for less urgent ailments.

Jacobson’s last comment stems from what people have heard for the last two years;

Vaccinations are key. Protect yourself, protect your family members.

We (hospital staff) are hearing in the community that over the counter supply for childresn’t acetminophen and ibuprophen has been compromised at some level.

At this point in time, the hospital as adequate supplies…continue to monitor what’s happening publicly.

Here is a link on the TBDHU for vaccine and flu shot information.


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