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New drive-up clinic to support CHEO’s mental health patients during pandemic

The clinic will allow doctors to check the vital signs of children and youth who are under mental health care, something that cannot be done remotely.
By: Alison Larabie Chase
October 27, 2020
Photo: Bruce Deachman/Ottawa Citizen.

Now more than ever, mental health care is essential, and more children and young people are seeking it from the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) since the pandemic began. This care is largely provided by virtual appointment, but there was concern that outpatients’ vital signs, including height, weight, heart rate, and blood pressure, were not being regularly checked as they would be at in-person appointments. This monitoring is important because it lets the doctor know whether there are any potential physical health problems or if the patient is adjusting well to new medications.

The answer that CHEO has come up with is a drive-up clinic, so these vital signs can be safely and quickly checked without the patient needing to come indoors and have a regular appointment. The service is operating at the hospital’s Montreal Road location and is by appointment only. A doctor will refer their patient to this clinic if they feel vitals checks are needed. Anyone attending the clinic will also be asked to fill out a pre-screening form for COVID-19 symptoms.

CHEO staff are happy to be able to provide this service safely and quickly for those who require it. CHEO’s acting chief of psychiatry Dr. Marjorie Robb calls the drive-up clinic “convenient, quick and, above all, safe.”

Source: Ottawa Citizen

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