Preventing infection, plus information about the virus

Can the COVID-19 virus move through a building’s ventilation system and do I need to wear a mask at all times?

Answer

The virus is emitted from the nose and mouth in the form of droplets that fall to the ground in a three- to six-foot radius indoors. Outside, the wind can carry these fine droplets, which can be absorbed by a passer-by.

In the workplace, where a safe distance of two metres is difficult to maintain, should employees wear masks?

Answer

Yes, that’s the recommendation.

I’ve heard that it’s possible for us to make our own masks. Is this true? If so, what is the proper material to use?

Answer

Cotton, linen and polyester are suitable. The important thing is to wash the mask every day and disinfect it by adding a little bleach to the water.

How much time would a person have to spend in a confined area with poor ventilation (e.g., a grocery store, pharmacy or convenience store) for the COVID 19 micro-droplets to cause an infection?

Do the odds of becoming infected decrease when ventilation is improved? Is the possibility of infection affected by the weather (e.g., wind, rain or sunshine)?

April 23, 2020

Answer

A person develops a COVID-19 infection by inhaling droplets in the air and also by touching one’s eyes, nose or mouth after coming into contact with a contaminated surface The best way to prevent transmission in a small space is to wear a mask, maintain a distance of at least two metres between yourself and others, and wash your hands after touching surfaces in that confined environment.

If I have tested positive for COVID-19, and if I later test negative on two occasions, am I immune from becoming reinfected? If so, for how long?

April 23, 2020

Answer

We still do not know whether a COVID-19 infection leads to immunity, how long immunity might last, or whether reinfection is possible. Research is now under way to find answers.

Are reusable, home-made cotton masks suitable for interviewing patients who have COVID-19 or patients who have no symptoms?

April 23, 2020

Answer

Precautions to prevent droplets from being inhaled—such as wearing a surgical mask, eye protection, gowns and gloves—are recommended to prevent infection when interviewing a patient with COVID-19. Home-made cotton masks are not as effective as surgical masks and are recommend if surgical masks are available.

Some of my colleagues on staff were in preventive isolation after a trip to the United States. Can they now resume intimate relations with their partners without fear?

None was exposed to the virus and all of them were quarantined for two weeks.

April 23, 2020

Answer

Yes, they can. There should be no risk of infection to close contacts, partners or spouses if two weeks of quarantine have passed since the last possible exposure.

What is the difference between a red zone and a pink zone, and what is the recommended personal protective equipment?

May 22, 2020

Answer

The red zone is located in the Jewish General Hospital on K6 (lung specialty), where a number of aerosol-generating procedures (PGA) are performed. It is also the site of 22 positive-pressure rooms. If PGAs are performed in these positive-pressure rooms, there is a risk that the aerosols will spread into the corridors. For this reason, any worker who enters this area must wear an N95 mask.

The pink zones are located in the JGH in the PACU and on CD4, K8, K9 and 8NW. Although positive-pressure rooms are found in these areas, PGAs are not performed there. Thus, N95 masks are not required. If a PGA is needed for a patient who cannot be admitted to K6 or K10, the patient will be taken to the pink zone and placed in a negative-pressure room, were the PGA can be controlled.

For more information, see the  PPE per Hot Zone document.

If I need to go to Intensive Care, what can I take with me (e.g., clothing, iPad, phone)?

May 22, 2020

Answer

There are no restrictions on what you can take, but it is important to clean your digital devices and other items. For more information on how to clean digital devices, please read those two documents:  Cleaning and Disinfection of IT Equipment.pdf and  Nettoyage des technologies de télésanté.pdf.

 

Why do the relatives of people dying from COVID-19 have to isolate themselves for 14 days after a compassionate visit?

Meanwhile, we healthcare workers are free to come and go, do our grocery shopping, etc., even though we are in direct contact with COVID patients every day. Are there any special rules that we have to follow?

June 3, 2020

Answer

People visiting someone with COVID-19 receive only limited training on how to put on and remove personal protective equipment (PPE). They may also touch contaminated surfaces, without automatically and instinctively cleaning their hands. They can easily forget to be vigilant during their visit and, thus, become contaminated. By contrast, healthcare workers are adequately trained in PPE.

Is it absolutely necessary for a nurse in a clinical setting to wear a face shield?

If the nurse is unable to do so for health reasons, would goggles be sufficient?

June 17, 2020

Answer

Yes, a face shield is absolutely necessary if you are within two metres of a patient and are providing care in a hot zone.

Page last updated on 

We always seek feedback to make our site better.