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Patient Volumes Up in Children’s Hospital ICU: Shared Health

March 30, 2023 4:25 PM | News

Health Sciences Centre (HSC) - Intensive Care Unit in Winnipeg

A red intensive care unit at the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg on Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mikaela MacKenzie – POOL)

WINNIPEG — An increase in respiratory illness among children may cause some surgeries to be postponed in the province.

Shared Health says 17 pediatric patients were receiving intensive care at HSC Children’s hospital as of Thursday morning. The normal baseline capacity in the pediatric ICU is nine.

Health officials say a significant number of these patients were experiencing medically complex cases that were further complicated by respiratory illness, including infants and young children.

Patient volumes in the children’s emergency department remain relatively stable. However, the number of pediatric patients visiting the ED with influenza-like symptoms has increased in the past two weeks, from a low of 22 on March 18 to 47 on Wednesday.

There were 51 patients in the neonatal ICU this morning (NICU). The normal baseline capacity is 50.

Approximately 10 staff members from pediatric surgical and recovery units are being temporarily reassigned to support the children in the pediatric ICU.

“While all urgent and life-threatening surgeries will continue to be performed, these staffing moves may result in the postponement of some non-urgent procedures,” Shared Health said in a release. “Families of affected patients will be contacted.”

Advice for parents on how to treat their sick or injured child, as well as when and where to take them for care, can be viewed at KidCareMB.ca.