The Glengarry News

Emergency department doctor shortage

publisher May 24, 2019 - 10:40am
Longer waits

Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH) is experiencing a temporary shortage of Emergency Department Physicians.

“Our current doctors are working extra shifts to ensure proper coverage and care to our community, and we have several new recruits starting July 1, including two from the Hospital Foundation’s “Adopt a Medical Resident” program,” the CCH says.

“Every attempt is made to match our Emergency Department (ED) schedule to patient arrival patterns, but this is never fully predictable. It is during the morning and early afternoon hours that most patients arrive in our ED, and this is where we concentrate our staffing. In the late-night hours, our volume of new patients is low, and there are fewer doctors on duty. During the overnight hours, the ED staff are busy with ambulances and critically ill patients.”

“While we do our best to see everyone that presents to the Emergency Department quickly, patients with less urgent conditions may have longer waits. Moving a doctor from daytime to the night would result in much longer daytime waits, affecting many more people.”

“It may benefit the community to understand that less urgent conditions will be more efficiently seen during morning and early afternoon hours. In fact, during the day we have up to four doctors on duty. We want everyone to know that we always strive to provide the best care possible in a timely way. If your condition is less severe, the wait time will likely be better during the day when we have higher staffing levels,” the CCH says.