Children's hospitals under strain in Canada's 6th COVID-19 wave

As Canada’s sixth wave of COVID-19 continues, hospitals caring for the country’s youngest patients are facing both high patient volumes and high levels of staff off sick.

This time of year, the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) in Ottawa normally sees up to 150 daily patients in its emergency department, but lately, it can be double that, with hours-long wait times.

Tammy DeGiovanni, CHEO’s senior vice president of clinical services and chief nurse executive, said around two-thirds of those kids are coming in with COVID symptoms. 

The hospital has also been forced to cancel some surgeries.

“The double whammy for us is that we also have many staff, medical

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