Patient, Family & Caregiver Experience

We are taking precautions at the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) to ensure the safety of our patients, families, caregivers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. Updates will be shared frequently to ensure everyone has the information required to remain safe.

Please visit the Province of Ontario's dedicated COVID-19 webpage to help educate yourself about COVID-19, including how you can protect yourself and what to do if you suspect you may be at risk. 

Please select from the menu below:

COVID-19 Outbreak: Inpatient Surgery Unit, Stratford General Hospital

Update: COVID-19 Outbreak Declared Over on January 19, 2022


A COVID-19 Outbreak has been declared at the following HPHA hospital site:

Stratford General Hospital

  • Inpatient Surgery Unit- Declared on January 7, 2022

COVID-19 Cases related to outbreak as of January 17, 2022:

  • 3 patients have tested positive 
  • 8 team members have tested positive 

Outbreak Management

Unit-level outbreaks for COVID-19 are declared, in partnership with Huron Perth Public Health, as soon as there are two or more confirmed positive cases among patients or staff that could have possibly been acquired on an inpatient unit. After 10 days with no new cases, the unit level outbreak is declared over in consultation with Huron Perth Public Health.

Media Releases / News Stories


HPHA Assessment Centre - Stratford Rotary Complex

As of January 13, 2021 Eligible Testing Groups Include:

  • Symptomatic people who fall into one of the following groups:
    • Patient-facing healthcare workers
    • Staff, volunteers, residents/inpatients, essential care providers, and visitors in highest risk settings
      • Highest risk settings include: hospitals (including complex continuing care facilities and paramedic services) and congregate living settings, including Long-Term Care, retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices and correctional institutions
    • Household members of workers in highest risk settings
    • Temporary Foreign Workers in congregate living settings
    • Patients seeking emergency medical care, at the discretion of the treating clinician
    • Outpatients for whom COVID-19 treatment is being considered, including:
      • Immunocompromised individuals not expected to mount an adequate immune response to COVID-19 vaccination or SARSCoV-2 infection, regardless of vaccination status.
      • Individuals who are not fully vaccinated and at highest risk of severe disease (anyone aged ≥70 years or ≥60 years who is Indigenous and/or has additional risk factors)
    • Pregnant people
    • People who are underhoused or homeless
    • First responders, including fire, police and paramedics
    • Elementary and secondary students and education staff who have received a PCR self-collection kit through their school
  • Symptomatic/asymptomatic people:
    • From First Nation, Inuit, and Métis communities and individuals travelling into these communities for work
    • On admission/transfer to or from hospital or congregate living setting
    • Close contacts and people in the context of confirmed or suspected outbreaks in highest risk4 settings as directed by the local public health unit
    • Individuals, and one accompanying caregiver, with written prior approval for out-of-country medical services from the General Manager, OHIP
    • Asymptomatic testing in hospital, long-term care, retirement homes and other congregate living settings and institutions as per provincial guidance and/or Directives, or as directed by public health units.
If you are part of any of the eligible testing groups, please call 519-272-8210 ext 2747 to book a test.

If you are unsure if you quality for a test, please use this online screening form

Getting a test for travel

  • In order to receive a COVID-19 test for outbound international travel and to receive a valid travel certificate you must pay for a private COVID-19 test. 
  • Travel related testing is not available through HPHA's Assessment Centre. A test done at a local assessment centre will not be sufficient to meet the requirements for international outbound travel.
  • Locations for private COVID-19 tests, and travel certificates, for outbound travel can be found on the Huron Perth Public Health website.
Testing for Children Aged Three Months to Two Years

Physician assessment for children aged three months to two years is available Monday through Friday from 12 p.m. to 7:30 p.m for appointments that were booked before December 31, 2021.  

HPHA COVID-19 Assessment Centre Location and Hours of Operation 

Please note that you must have an appointment for testing, we do not accept walk-in appointments. 

Location:  Stratford Rotary Complex - Hall D - 353 McCarthy Road, Stratford  - Please use Community Hall Entrance

Hours of Operation:  Monday to Friday from 9:15 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Booking Office:  Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. / 519-272-8210 ext. 2747

For information about Assessment services in Listowel, Grand Bend and Goderich, visit the Huron Perth Public Health website by clicking here.

COVID-19 Clinical Assessments

What is a COVID-19 Clinical Assessment? 

An assessment with a physician for those individuals who do not qualify for a COVID-19 test.

How do I know if I need a COVID-19 Clinical Assessment?

The province has recently updated its online screening tool to help determine whether you should stay home and isolate or seek treatment. You can use this tool to guide a self-referral for a clinical assessment appointment, or you can be referred from your primary caregiver and services like Telehealth.

What type of patient is a COVID-19 Clinical Assessment for?

COVID-19 Clinical Assessment appointments are for anyone experiencing high risk symptoms/criteria. Anyone experiencing severe symptoms is advised to immediately call 9-1-1 or visit the nearest Emergency Department. Those experiencing mild symptoms, who are otherwise healthy, are asked to manage their symptoms at home. 

If you have any one of the following high risk criteria you should book a Clinical Assessment Appointment (note: COVID-19 testing is only available to those who qualify, per new testing guidelines. This appointment is a clinical assessment appointment with a physician not a COVID-19 test).

High risk symptoms/criteria includes:

  • Fever for 3 or more days
  • Mild to moderate breathing difficulty
  • Poor drinking or dehydration
  • A child who is 3-6 months old with any symptom (infants less than three months old please call your primary care provider or go to your closest emergency department)
What are considered severe symptoms of COVID-19 and what should I do if I'm experiencing these symptoms?


If you have any severe symptoms you should seek immediate attention at your closest emergency department.

Severe symptoms include:

  • Moderate to severe difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • New onset of loss of speech or mobility, or confusion
  • Chest pain
How do I book a COVID-19 Clinical Assessment?



  • Use the online booking tool to book your appointment. It’s quick, easy to use, and means you won’t have to wait on hold to speak to someone. 
  • If you don’t have access to a smartphone or computer, appointments may also be requested by phone at 519-272-8210 ext. 2747.  
  • Please remember that appointments are required. We cannot accommodate walk-ins.
Hours of Operation:


Monday through Friday from 12:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. 


Stratford Rotary Complex  - Hall D - Please use the Community Hall Entrance 

353 McCarthy Rd, Stratford  



COVID-19 Cases in Huron & Perth

There is local spread of the COVID-19 virus across Huron and Perth as well as the rest of Ontario. We must all act as if we could come into contact with COVID-19 anywhere in our community and as if we could pass COVID-19 on unknowingly.

Cases are reported by Huron Perth Public Health. Please click here to see the latest case totals.

Universal Masking - Outpatients, Caregivers & Visitors

Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance requires all outpatients, visitors, caregivers to wear a mask for the duration of your time at any of our hospital sites. If you come to the hospital wearing a cloth mask, you will need to remove that mask, and wear a disposable medical grade mask provided by the hospital.

Why are patients and care partners being asked to wear masks at Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance?

Physical distancing, or staying more than two metres (six feet) apart from others is the most important strategy to prevent the spread of COVID-19 from person to person. Some people who have COVID-19 may not have symptoms but can still spread the virus without knowing.Because we cannot guarantee physical distancing at all times, we require all patients and care partners wear a mask upon entry so we can keep everyone safe.

Under what authority is this requirement made?

The Ministry of Health has included directions for the use of masking by visitors, caregivers and patients for control of COVID-19 In the following documents.

How does wearing a mask help?

Masks decrease the spread of COVID-19 in two ways. First, people wearing masks help protect others around them by limiting the spread of their own droplets when coughing, sneezing and speaking. Second, those wearing masks protect themselves by reducing the chance of inhaling contaminated droplets from others who are within two metres.

Are additional masks available if needed?

Masks will be handed out at screening stations upon entry to Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance. We will also provide patients and care partners with a new mask if it becomes very wet, soiled, damaged or dropped on the floor. Just ask your health care staff for a new mask.

What should be done with the mask when taken off?

If you will need to put the mask on again, you may remove it safely and place it on a clean piece of paper towel. However, if the mask will no longer be needed, please dispose it in a waste container.

Use hand sanitizer frequently while at the hospital. And, always remember to clean your hands before putting on a mask and after taking it off.

What happens if I can’t wear a mask due to a medical reason?

The use of a mask can be associated with a sense of anxiety. A position paper from the Canadian Thoracic Society has identified that there is no evidence that wear a mask will lead to a flare up of an underlying lung condition.

What if I refuse to wear a mask?

You will not be allowed within any HPHA hospital site to visit or provide assistance for your loved one if you refuse to wear a mask.

You will not be allowed to attend any scheduled procedures if you refuse to wear a mask.

You will be asked to leave by our HPHA screening staff.

If you are in need of Emergency Medical Assistance, please attend the Emergency Department where appropriate precautions will be taken.

Universal Masking - Inpatients

Masking is a widely accepted and proven method of source control for COVID-19. Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) staff and physicians wear masks to ensure the safety of our patients. Masks are also required to be worn by our outpatients and family and caregivers during their visits to any of our hospital sites.

Our inpatients are also required to wear masks during their hospital stay unless the HPHA care team decides that the patient is medically exempt.

In addition to maintaining a 2 metre/6 feet physical distance from others whenever possible, inpatients must properly wear a mask in the following situations:

  • Whenever they leave their bed space
  • When a person enters their bed space
 A bed space is defined as:
  • A private room
  • The bed and the area inside the bedside curtains, in a shared room

Inpatients should not wear their mask while they are sleeping.

A new mask will be provided each day.  If during the day, a mask becomes soiled, damaged or lost, a replacement will be given.

For more information, take a look at our Patient, Family & Caregiver Information: Universal Masking for Inpatients 




HPHA has closed all non-essential entrances in an effort to control and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Patients and family/caregivers are asked to enter through the following entrances:
  • Clinton Public Hospital – Emergency Department
  • St. Marys Memorial Hospital – Main Entrance
  • Seaforth Community Hospital – Main Entrance
  • Stratford General Hospital
    • Main Entrances (Cambria St. & West Gore St.) 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Emergency Department (for emergency care and after hours, 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.)
Anyone entering an HPHA hospital site will be asked to share:
  • your name
  • purpose for your visit
  • if you have symptoms of a respiratory illness
  • recent travel history
Screening information will be recorded to assist with COVID-19 contact tracing and case management if needed. Patient, family and caregiver privacy will be maintained.

Screening may lead to line-ups and delays entering the hospital. Plan ahead. Leave early and allow for extra time. We appreciate your patience.

If you are screened without risk, you will be permitted entry to the hospital. Staff will direct you to your appointment location/loved one’s unit.

Please note you will be provided with a disposable medical grade mask and will be required to wear it for the duration of your visit. If you come to the hospital wearing a cloth mask, you will be asked to remove that mask. If during your visit, your mask becomes wet or soiled, it must be replaced. New masks can be obtained from health care staff.

If you arrive at a hospital site with gloves on, you will be asked to remove your gloves and perform hand hygiene frequently during your visit.

Same-day Re-entry
If you leave the hospital and plan to return the same day, you will be screened again.

If You Do Not Pass Screening
Anyone who does not pass active screening will be provided with the appropriate next steps.

Family & Caregiver Presence Guidelines

Our Family and Caregiver Presence Guidelines are reviewed on a regular basis and are endorsed by our Patient Partners.

Our last updates were made on December 17, 2021.  Review our latest Family and Caregiver Presence Guidelines

Surgery During COVID-19

To ensure the health and safety of all staff, physicians and patients at HPHA, please follow the guidance below when preparing for your surgery and on the date of your procedure.

Click on the links below to access information and instructions.

Caregiver Support

Caregivers are more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 Community South West Region Pandemic Planning Table recognizes the increased strain and challenges of caregiving during this time.

By clicking the link below, you will find a one-stop shop of information and resources to support caregivers in Grey Bruce, Huron Perth, London Middlesex, Oxford and Elgin.

Click here for information and resources for caregivers.

Temporary Suspension of Volunteer & Auxiliary Program

HPHA has temporarily suspended our Volunteer and Auxiliary Program to minimize the risk to our volunteers and to further reduce the number of individuals coming into hospital. We look forward to bringing our dedicated volunteers back into our hospitals and rescheduling our community and special events.

For More Information