HALIFAX -- Surgical services, including C-sections, are suspended at the Aberdeen Hospital in New Glasgow, N.S., after an employee at the hospital tested positive for COVID-19.

Brendan Elliott, senior communications advisor for the NSHA, says health officials aren’t aware of any patients who had direct contact with the employee, but they are investigating, and any close contacts will be notified.

Elliott says a number of staff members have been advised to self-isolate and have been tested for COVID-19.

“Due to this situation, a decision was made to temporarily stop surgical services at Aberdeen Hospital until further notice,” said Elliott in an emailed statement to CTV News.

“Because surgical services are temporarily suspended, we are not able to perform C-sections.”

The inpatient women's and children's unit is temporarily closed for labour and deliveries.

Patients will have to travel to the Colchester East Hants Health Centre in Truro, N.S., or St. Martha’s Regional Hospital in Antigonish, N.S., depending on where they live.

The NSHA says patients who are expected to deliver in the next few days will be contacted by a member of the maternity team to discuss an alternate birth plan.

An obstetrician and nursing staff will be available at the Aberdeen Hospital to support pregnancy care in the event of an emergency or unplanned delivery.

The Women’s and Children’s health program will continue to provide emergency care, as well as pediatric care, prenatal and postnatal outpatient visits. 

Prenatal care will continue to be provided by the hospital’s team.

Elliott said urgent and emergent orthopedics cases are now being diverted to the Halifax Infirmary site of the QEII Health Sciences Centre.

Urgent and emergency general surgery cases are being diverted to the Colchester East Hants Health Centre.

Nova Scotia announced 31 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the total number of cases in the province to 293.