The purpose of this education document is to provide you with the information you need to protect yourself, your loved ones, and all our patients and staff from the spread of COVID-19 and other harmful viruses or bacteria.
When you finish reading this, you will know:
- The most effective way to wash your hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer,
- How to safely put on and take off a mask, and
- The additional Personal Protective Equipment you may need to wear.
Please note: in order to manage the number of people in the hospital at any one time, the number and length of ECP visits may be limited. We appreciate your cooperation.
- Essential Care Partner is a support person, chosen by the patient, whose presence is considered essential to the safety and well-being of the patient while they are in the hospital. Often, they are family or close friends, who may know the patient’s health history, lifestyle and personal values. During full visitor restrictions, only patients and ECPs can enter the hospital; there is no access for members of the public.
- Germs are tiny organisms that live in the environment. They are too small to be seen by our eyes. Some are good and help our bodies. Others are bad and can cause sickness. Bad germs can get into our bodies through our eyes, nose, mouth or an open sore on our bodies. ,Examples of germs include:
- The flu
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is clothing or equipment designed to protect your body from injury or infection. At the hospital, PPE can include a gown, gloves, mask, goggles, or face shield. It is very important to protect your eyes, nose and mouth as this is how germs enter the body.
Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) is a term used to describe the actions to prevent the spread of germs. The short version is IPAC (pronounced EYE-pack). You may hear this term while in the hospital. Physical distancing, screening people for illness, disinfecting objects, wearing masks, and limiting close social contacts are some examples of IPAC.
How is COVID-19 spread?
The COVID-19 virus is spread easily among people. People may be spreading it and not be aware of it. COVID-19 is spread from the mouth or nose in little droplets. When someone infected with COVID-19 sneezes, coughs, or touches their nose, mouth or eyes and then touches something else, they may be spreading it. Search online for “Perley Rideau help stop the spread video” to see how easily COVID-19 can spread.
How to reduce the spread of COVID-19
Cleaning your hands often and properly is one of the best ways to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
How to wash your hands with soap and water:
- Wet your hands under running water.
- Apply soap to your wet hands.
- Rub your hands together for 15 to 20 seconds to create lots of bubbles all over your hands.
- Rinse your hands under running water.
- Dry your hands.
How to clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub:
- Apply hand rub about the size of a quarter to your dry palm
- Rub your hands together for 15 to 20 seconds until the rub is dry. Make sure the rub touches all areas of both hands (palms, back of hands, between fingers and thumbs)
Search online for “Ottawa Public Health Ottawa's health is in your hands” to watch a video of how to wash your hands properly.
Make sure you wash your hands with alcohol-based hand rub before you enter the patient’s room and after you leave the patient’s room.
Wearing a mask or face covering is another way to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Everyone at The Royal must always wear a mask or face covering. The mask must cover your mouth and nose completely. Wash your hands before you put on a mask and again before you take it off. Do not pull the mask under your chin or let it hang off one ear. Search online for “COVID-19: How to wear a non-medical mask or face covering properly” for a video about how to put on and take off a mask properly.
There may be times in the hospital where you are required to wear extra PPE. This could include a gown, face visor and gloves. The hospital will provide these items to you. A health-care provider will show you how to take it off safely. Talk to a member of your loved one's care team before putting on extra PPE.
In exceptional circumstances when there is an outbreak or other health and safety concern, it may be necessary to restrict ECP visits.
IMPORTANT: In person visits pose a greater risk. We must all work together to ensure the safety of all patients, staff and Essential Care Partners. ECPs can help everyone at the hospital stay safe by:
- choosing virtual visits when possible to reduce in-person visits
- scheduling a time in advance to be with your loved one (talk to the clerk on your loved one’s unit)
- visiting in-person only for essential reasons at key points in care, keeping your visits short and performing several tasks at each visit
- completing the infection safety education and following all Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) practices
- being open to guidance regarding infection prevention from staff on the unit or members of your loved one’s health-care team
- leaving the hospital promptly to minimize the number of people in the hospital at one time.
Thank you very much for your cooperation.