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Ambulances wait outside the emergency room entrance of St. Paul's Hospital, in Vancouver, in an undated file photo.

Jesse Winter/The Globe and Mail

Officials at St. Paul’s Hospital in downtown Vancouver confirm a COVID-19 outbreak has spread to two more units at its cardiac centre.

In a memo to staff, the director of the St. Paul’s Hospital Heart Centre says the outbreak declared last week on one unit has spread to a second unit and an intensive-care unit.

The memo, issued late Sunday on behalf of centre directors Amanda Harvey and Dr. Sean Virani, says the outbreak is on units 5A, 5B and the Cardiac Care Intensive Care Unit.

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The memo does not say how many patients, staff or visitors may be involved and a spokesman for Providence Health, which operates St. Paul’s, says any numbers would be released by the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority.

The three units are now closed to all new admissions and transfers, and the memo says Providence Health is working with the health authority to ensure appropriate precautions are in place to stop further spread.

The memo says other Heart Centre operations remain open, while a spokesman says other services at St. Paul’s, including the busy maternity and emergency wards, are running normally.

Staff testing is under way for employees at the Heart Centre and the memo says more swabbing clinics are planned for the coming days.

It urges staff to remain vigilant and immediately self-isolate and report any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 infection.

Sign up for the Coronavirus Update newsletter to read the day’s essential coronavirus news, features and explainers written by Globe reporters and editors.

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