New Program – Extra helping hands help keep everyone safe in our Emergency Departments July 29, 2022 Accidents are a normal part of life, and our Horizon Emergency Department (ED) staff is here to help. If you happen to visit one of Horizon’s EDs, you may notice additional staff members working in the waiting room area to ensure everyone receives safe and quality care. This is a new, 24-7 service being piloted at Horizon’s hospitals in Fredericton, Miramichi, Moncton, Saint John and Waterville. The program is one of many initiatives that align with the Provincial Health Plan to take immediate action to stabilize our health care system. “Dedicated additional staff persons in our EDs are part of our collective effort to improve emergency services,” said Margaret Melanson, interim President and CEO for Horizon Health Network. “This is another way Horizon is taking every opportunity to meet individuals where they are to ensure care is more proactive, efficient, and effective.” Our staff and physicians are monitoring the outcomes of this program, and hope to extend it to other EDs as necessary. Who are these “dedicated additional staff persons” in EDs? While you wait to be triaged and seen in the ED, you may be introduced to our newest care team members who work exclusively in hospital waiting rooms in Fredericton, Miramichi, Moncton, Saint John, and Waterville. They may be a licenced practical nurse (LPN), a patient care attendant with specialized training (PCA 2), or a nursing student who is eager to help on the frontline. After introducing themselves to you, they may: Check your vital signs;Ensure you are comfortable i.e., bring you a blanket if you are cold, or water if you are thirsty;Report any concerns to the triage nurse or ED staff; andMonitor the well-being of others who are waiting in the ED. We welcome your feedback Only time will tell what the impact of this new program will be. For now, have you or a family member found these extra services in the ED waiting room helpful? We would like to hear from you: Contact our Patient Representative Services to share your experiences.If your experience was extraordinary, we encourage you to complete a quick form to send a Bravo! (a thank-you message) to any one of our ED staff. A thank-you will remind them that we appreciate the contributions they make to keep our communities healthy. Did you know? Every year, there are over 250,000 visits to Horizon’s EDs. A triage system is in place in the ED, where the sickest and most vulnerable patients are cared for first. Unfortunately, that may mean a longer wait for our non-urgent conditions e.g. earaches. Helpful Tip – Visit SoWhyWait.ca to help choose the best option for care: pharmacist, primary health care provider, after-hours clinic, eVisitNB, Tele-Care 811, or the ED.