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How Order Sets are Helping Hospitals Manage COVID-19

Last updated March 10, 2022

January 2022 marked year two of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada, and one thing is certain: pandemic fatigue is real. What was supposed to have been a 14-day lockdown has continued longer than many of us could have imagined as we continue struggling to get ahead of COVID. 

A strong vaccine rollout – nearly 31 million Canadians are now fully vaccinated – helped contribute to a steady decline of new COVID cases throughout the fall, and it seemed that maybe a return to normal was in sight. But then the Omicron variant arrived in November, bringing with it record-high daily case counts that once again overwhelmed our already strained healthcare system, prompting many provinces to reinstate lockdown restrictions.

Now, three months into 2022, with the Omicron wave subsiding, Ontario has announced it will be lifting all COVID-19 restrictions, including public mask mandates by April 27, 2022, though the move has been met with mixed reactions from health experts.

In a statement, Dr. Kieran Moore, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health said “We are now learning to live with and manage COVID-19 for the long term. This necessitates a shift to a more balanced response to the pandemic.”

However, Moore reinforced that lifting restrictions, including the mask mandate “does not mean the risk is gone” or that the pandemic is over.

How Digital Tools Help Hospitals

In the fight against COVID, every bit counts – digital tools like COVID-19 Order Sets have been essential throughout the pandemic. Order Sets ensure the latest evidence and treatment best practices remain at clinician’s fingertips, enabling them to confidently assess and treat patients, which helps improve patient outcomes and reduce errors when clinicians are stretched thin. 

COVID-19 Order Sets function as digital checklists, guiding healthcare workers through a structured set of recommended diagnostics and treatment options. They’re updated regularly as our understanding of COVID-19 and how it spreads advances and to reflect additional factors including supply shortages, new medication recommendations, and isolation precautions.

Order Sets have been critical for hospitals across the country throughout the pandemic – Hamilton Health Sciences, a network of hospitals in southern Ontario, has used COVID-19 Order Sets nearly 30,000 times to assess and treat patients since the pandemic began.

“Think Research provided Hamilton Health Sciences with a means to update our order sets related to COVID-19 in an efficient and timely manner,” said Dr. Rob Lloyd, Chief Medical Information Officer at Hamilton Health Sciences. “With the landscape of care around COVID-19 changing every day, expedited service has been paramount. Think Research delivered, which is evident by the thousands of downloads of our COVID-19 order sets”.

As the province continues lifting COVID-19 restrictions, we are regularly updating and prioritizing COVID-19 Order Sets to reflect the latest treatment information and ensure timely access for hospitals. 

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Request a demo today to learn more about how COVID-19 Order Sets can enhance patient care, improve clinician confidence and help ease staff burnout in your facility.

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