Pine Falls Emergency Department to Experience Temporary Suspension of Service
Effective immediately emergency department services at Pine Falls Health Complex are temporarily suspended.
Individuals seeking emergency care are directed to call 9-1-1 or their local 10-digit emergency number in the event of a medical emergency.
On July 18, Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority partnered with Shared Health Emergency Response Services to implement an innovative model that saw paramedics join the care team in the Pine Falls Health Complex emergency room to maintain care delivery. This model was introduced with the assumption that the regional health authority would be able to recruit nursing staff and schedule clinicians who are able to requisition diagnostics and prescribe. Despite best efforts, significant nursing vacancies still exist and the regional health authority has experienced recent physician departures. Combined, these vacancies undermine the effectiveness of the model and put the safety of patients at risk.
“Interlake-Eastern RHA will continue to pursue this model of care in the region. The region extends its thanks to the paramedics who volunteered to participate and to Shared Health Emergency Response Services who helped us successfully establish and maintain a working emergency department and responsive care team,” says Interlake-Eastern RHA CEO, Marion Ellis.
“The RHA acknowledges the gratitude that communities have expressed for the ongoing efforts of nurses, paramedics, physicians and other staff to maintain access to care at the emergency department in Pine Falls and across the region during these challenging times.”
Care for inpatients at Pine Falls hospital is unchanged and the hospital will continue to admit patients in need of care. Dialysis and laboratory services remain available according to their usual schedule. Ambulances will be redirected to the nearest or most appropriate emergency department.
Ellis also points out that nursing staff in Pine Falls Health Complex continue to develop emergency department skills with education and training as a means of preparing for the resumption of emergency department service.
“Interlake-Eastern RHA is maintaining efforts to recruit nursing staff to work in the facility. We are committed to resuming emergency department care in Pine Falls Health Complex,” says Ellis.
Until emergency department services can be resumed, hours of access at Pine Falls Health Complex’s primary care clinic will be extended to evenings and weekends. Visit www.ierha.ca and click “Find Us” and “Clinics” for clinic hours.
Residents should continue to watch IERHA’s emergency department schedules accessible at www.ierha.ca for updates.