Inpatient Surgery Unit outbreak declared over

Thu, 02/01/2024 - 03:30

Cambridge Memorial Hospital, in consultation with the Region of Waterloo Public Health, has declared an end to the COVID-19 outbreak in the Inpatient Surgery Unit (Wing C, level 3) today Thursday, February 1. The outbreak was first declared on January 26. Measures, such as enhanced cleaning and visitor restrictions were quickly put into placeat the time to help contain the spread of the virus.

In total, two (2) cases were deemed healthcare acquired infections as a result of this outbreak.  

With the increasing number of COVID cases in our community and the early onset of flu season, CMH urges staff and visitors to stay home when they are feeling unwell. For your protection, surgical masks can be found at mask dispensers at all public entrances to the hospital. CMH strongly encourages everyone to keep their flu and COVID vaccinations up to date as being immunized is best way to keep yourself and your family safe from severe illness. 


 - - Original outbreak message (Jan. 26) below


In consultation with the Region of Waterloo Public Health, a COVID-19 outbreak has been declared in the Inpatient Surgery Unit (Wing C, level 3). A hospital outbreak is declared when two or more patients and/or staff test positive for an infectious illness that was acquired in hospital within a timeframe that is consistent with the epidemiology of the disease, and when there is a link between the cases.


At this time, the outbreak is limited to two cases (n=2). Visitors are urged to stay home if they feel unwell and to check their local Public Health website for current information on local outbreaks. 


Staff working in the outbreak unit are required to have a negative rapid antigen test daily before work. This includes staff that have worked on unit since the outbreak has been declared and are scheduled in another unit. All staff are being asked to review the current guidelines on what to do if symptomatic of COVID.


These precautions have also been added to enhance safety:

  • Masks to be used by staff at all times while in the unit; face shields to be worn within two meters of patients; a N95 mask must be worn when caring for a patient in isolation. 
  • All patients will be placed in airborne/droplet/contact precautions
  • Enhanced surveillance by swabbing and testing non-infected patients every three days until the outbreak is declared over.
  • Enhanced cleaning, especially to high touch areas.
  • Visitors are restricted to the unit except in end-of-life situations. Virtual visits and phone connections for patients and families can be arranged.
  • Signage has been posted at entrances

The outbreak may be declared over on January 31, 2024, if no new cases arise.


The safety and wellbeing of our staff, providers and patients is our top priority. When coming to hospital, wear a surgical mask provided at all public entrances, clean hands often and practice physical distancing.