An Open Letter to the Good Folks of St. Thomas & Elgin County
On behalf of the medical leadership of the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital, I want to express my immense gratitude for the overwhelming support the community continues to show and display in the face of this pandemic.
At this time, STEGH does not need any non-medical grade masks. HOWEVER, as Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, recently shared, there is a role for homemade masks to be worn whenever you leave your homes and use any type of public space.
When used in conjunction with social distancing measures, they can reduce the transmission of respiratory droplets from yourself to others and/or the environment around you (e.g. door handles, shopping carts, etc.).
Please remember, these non-medical grade masks are not without risk. If you make the decision to wear a mask, take every precaution not to touch the outside of it, wear and remove it properly, and, OF COURSE, continue with frequent hand washing.
Finally, make absolute sure you remove and wash your mask regularly and as soon as it is visibly soiled or becomes damp.
I encourage you all to continue with your efforts to #SewStrong and #FlattenTheCurve.
We are all in this together!
Dr. Waleed Chehadi MD FRCPC
Internal and Critical Care Medicine
Chief of Staff
Adjunct Professor of Medicine
St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital