Omicron Information and Resources

Quick details:

  • We are aware that the situation with respect to Omicron is changing quickly and are paying close attention to what this might mean for GRH.
  • Please continue to be diligent in completing point of care risk assessments, wear the appropriate PPE, physical distance and follow IPAC protocols.
  • We don’t yet know what this changing environment will mean for certain processes but we are closely monitoring and will let you know of any changes as soon as possible.
  • In any decisions we make, we will be prioritizing the health and safety of all.

Report a positive COVID result through the online form:

Link available here

OR Scan the QR code to access the COVID reporting form: 

Read the FAQ from our January 14, 2022 Omicron staff update 

Watch the recording of our January 14, 2022 Omicron staff update 

Watch the recording of our December 21, 2021 Omicron staff update

Read the Omicron staff update FAQs here.

Communication to date:

Planning for Omicron: December 15, 2021

Omicron and travel restrictions: December 17, 2021

Directive 5 and PPE Recommendations: December 21, 2021

Staying safe over the holidays: December 23, 2021

New guidelines to protect staff and patients: December 23, 2021

New limits to Care Partner visits: January 3, 2022 *updated January 5, 2022

Updated PPE guidance for care partners: January 14, 2022

Changes to PCR testing prioritization for COVID-19: January 14, 2022

Launch of online staff COVID reporting form: January 14, 2022

PCR self-swab testing discontinued: January 19, 2022

Update to staff PCR testing guidelines: January 24, 2022

Update on services resumption: January 28, 2022

Additional break areas for team members, break safety reminders: January 28, 2022

Allowing COVID+ and exposed team members to return to work: January 28, 2022

Waterloo Wellington COVID Reports: 

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Friday, January 14, 2022

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Friday, January 21, 2022 

Tuesday, January 25, 2022 

Friday, January 28, 2022

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Friday, February 4, 2022

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 

Friday, February 11, 2022

Friday, February 18, 2022

Friday, February 25, 2022

Information to support you (this information will be updated as new details are known):

Volunteers: As a result of the rapidly changing environment and the increased risks that the COVID-19 Omicron variant poses locally, the Hospital and Foundation are taking unfortunate, but necessary additional steps to protect all patients in care and the Hospital team members and volunteers who support that care.

Effective December 20, 2021 and in consultation with our partner hospitals in the Region, in-hospital volunteering at the KW Campus (including the Cancer Centre) and the Freeport Campus has been suspended. This suspension does not include volunteers where there is a need for additional support. Our volunteers will be missed and, as always, we look forward to seeing the return of all of these team members as soon as possible.

Boosters: Boosters are critically important in reducing spread and severity of illness.

  • If you have had your booster, please let us know at covid@grhosp.on.ca.
  • If you have not had your booster, please make an appointment to get it.

Staff travel: Restrictions have recently been updated as a result of the Omicron variant. The federal government has released a Covid -19 global travel advisory indicating that effective December 15, 2021 individuals should avoid all non-essential travel outside of Canada. For more information, click here. Please review current restrictions and check in with occupational health and safety at ext. 1919 before travelling or making plans to travel.

Staff safety: Please continue to complete your point of care risk assessments before every patient interaction and don the appropriate PPE. When 2M of space cannot be achieved, be sure you are wearing your PPE. Only take off your PPE when you can keep 2M distance from others, including when you are on breaks.

As information is rapidly changing, we will provide up-to-date information here. New temporary guidance from Public Health Ontario states that:

  • N95 masks are to be used in all COVID positive and suspect patient interactions and
  • N95 masks should be used for all droplet contacts.

We will continue to update this guidance as new information is known. If you need to know where your supply of N95 masks are, please speak with the manager of the area where you are providing care.

Staff COVID testing: Book an appointment online at the GRH Drive-Thru Testing CentreIf there are no appointments available, call 226-806-5690 Option 4 to arrange a time to be tested. Staff will be accommodated for testing. Bring your hospital ID to your appointment.

Care partners: We understand that access to family members and friends are vital to the wellbeing of patients that are in our care. However, with cases of COVID-19 continuing to increase exponentially within the province and in Waterloo Region communities, we have to take steps to reduce its impact on staff and patients, and protect the resources we have available to ensure we can continue to provide care. Click here to read the most recent (updated January 5, 2022) guidelines.

Resources to support you:

Point of care risk assessment – updated December 16, 2021

Choosing the right PPE

For more information on planning for Omicron

Learn more about Extended PPE guidelines, through this chart- January 12, 2022.

PRINT: Patient hand out (Letter to all patients admitted to the hospital during the Omicron wave