CCH sends volunteers home, SLC cancels trips amid COVID-19 concerns

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By Nick Seebruch
CCH sends volunteers home, SLC cancels trips amid COVID-19 concerns
Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH)

CORNWALL, Ontario – Local organizations are taking steps to mitigate a possible outbreak of COVID-19.

While there have yet to be any positive cases in Cornwall or in the United Counties of SD&G, some local organizations have enacted measures to insulate the public and protect their employees and volunteers.

READ MORE: EOHU plans for COVID-19 testing and assessment sites

The Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH), confirmed that it has cancelled all volunteer related activities.

“This decision was made for the protection of our volunteer members.  Most of our volunteers are seniors and are assisting us in high traffic areas, we do not want to put them at any risk of exposure to COVID-19,” said Jeanette Despatie, CEO of the CCH in an email to Seaway News.

Volunteers at CCH managed events and activities such as the sale of Nevada tickets, assisted patients at the entrance and in the ER, as well as offered spiritual support in their Caregiver Centre.

Despatie stated that no programs would be disrupted due to the lack of volunteers at the hospital.

St. Lawrence College announced today, March 12, that it was restricting all travel to staff and students, both internationally, domestically, and within the province of Ontario.

“Additionally, travel between our campuses and office locations will be limited to essential trips and must be pre-approved by managers,” reads a statement from St. Lawrence College. “All other discretionary travel should be avoided, if possible and for on- or off-campus meetings the college strongly encourages employees to use options such as phone-in, Skype, and video conferencing. Our goal is to do our part in reducing the possibility of exposure to or spread of the virus and we trust our community partners and external contacts will understand these preventative measures.”

St. Lawrence College has also cancelled all on and off campus events planned between March 12 and April 10.

“SLC is acting in the best interests of our students, staff, faculty, and community partners. We appreciate that the situation is evolving quickly, and we will continue to send updates as decisions are confirmed,” the statement from the College goes on to say. “The web page dedicated to SLC news related to COVID-19 is a source for updates, and our local public health officials continue to be invaluable in leading our community’s response and preparedness.”

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