Sask. government says social media posts about ICU patient transfers should be 'disregarded'
The Saskatchewan government released a statement Thursday morning saying social media posts about ICU patient transfers should be “disregarded” following immense confusion among doctors and officials over planned ICU patient transfers to Ontario.
The statement comes following social media posts by doctors in Saskatchewan and Ontario that said upcoming ICU patient transfers from Saskatchewan to Ontario had been cancelled.
Dr. Hassan Masri, an ICU physician from Saskatoon, tweeted the Saskatchewan government has called off all further patient transfers to Ontario ICUs, which the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre denies.
Masri told CTV News Wednesday evening there were plans in place for “a lot more” Saskatchewan patients to be sent out east for care this week.
Dr. Michael Warner from Toronto said he expected to receive a Saskatchewan COVID-19 patient at his hospital on Thursday, but the transfer was cancelled by the Saskatchewan government.
Ontario Health executive vice president Dr. Chris Simpson told CP24 on Tuesday there are plans in place to transfer an additional six patients throughout Thursday and Friday – which would bring the total number of patient transfers from Saskatchewan to 12.
Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) president Marlo Pritchard responded to that statement on Wednesday morning saying that is not the case.
CTV News reached out to the premier’s office Wednesday evening to ask for clarity about the claims made by the doctors.
The statement from the government on Thursday morning not did clarify why Ontario officials believed six more patients were coming or why doctors were under the impression those additional transfers had been cancelled.
A spokesperson for the Saskatchewan government said the province will announce all confirmed ICU patient transfers through official channels.
On Thursday afternoon the province said three more patients will be transferred to Ontario in the coming days.
With files from CTVRegina.ca's Michaela Solomon