ST. JOHN'S, N.L. — Eastern Health is cancelling some routine surgeries and appointments at the Janeway due to a surge in children going to the emergency room with respiratory illnesses. 

The health authority said affected patients will be contacted directly and asked to reschedule for a later date. The change takes effect Monday, Dec. 5. 

Staff and physicians are mobilizing additional human resources and waiting for areas and treatment spaces to help the emergency department and in-patient units.

Where possible, Eastern Health is asking people to make an appointment with their primary health-care provider for non-urgent concerns before going to the emergency department. Those who are unsure if they need to go to the emergency room can call 811 to speak with a nurse. 

People with medical emergencies should continue to call 911.

Health officials stressed that people should keep up to date with influenza and COVID-19 vaccinations, staying at home when sick and other preventative health measures like handwashing and masking.


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