Red Deer Hospital diverts surgeries to Edmonton and Calgary – Red Deer Advocate


Red Deer Regional Hospital is performing a surgical diversion.

This means that some patients requiring surgery in the central area of ​​Alberta Health Services have been referred to Edmonton or Calgary.

“My understanding is that the hospital has so much overcapacity that it can no longer accommodate even emergencies,” said Dr Bryce Henderson, who has worked at the hospital since 2006.

“There’s really no room to get people to the operating room because you can’t get them into the (emergency room) and even though you brought them into the (emergency room), there are no beds to put them before or after surgery. The whole system is blocked.

This is a “very worrying” situation, noted Henderson.

“We are now overcapacity for emergency surgeries, even though we are not doing elective surgery,” said Henderson.

“This means that our entire hospital is already overcapacity with emergency surgeries. … It’s really indicative of the state in which we are overcapacity or overwhelmed.

Henderson said doctors at the hospital were notified of the surgical bypass on Sunday.

AHS said the hospital transferred nine patients to Edmonton and Calgary over the weekend for surgeries.

“All patients were considered non-urgent and the decision to transfer them was made to reduce patient wait times,” AHS said in a statement Sunday.

“The site is seeing a higher than normal number of patients requiring surgery. There are also vacancies in the operating theater in progress which have had an impact on the number of procedures that can be performed. “

AHS said the hospital is diverting some elective patients to Edmonton or Calgary and is also busy performing additional surgeries at other sites in the central area, such as the Olds Hospital and Care Center.

“All emergency surgeries are handled at the RDRHC as usual,” AHS said, adding that the situation was being closely monitored and patients were being diverted if necessary.

“AHS continues to actively recruit additional operating room staff to support increased surgical volumes at the RDRHC, as well as to provide additional internal training to staff through an expanded operating room training program. on the site. “

A backlog of surgeries is not a new problem, Henderson said.

“I was on call about two weeks ago and I was at night for four days in a row. I did about 18 surgeries in four days and it was always extremely saved, with two pages on our booking list for emergency surgeries when I was done. I think this is indicative of the need for emergency surgical services.

A situation like this shows the need for a second hospital in Red Deer, Henderson added.

“Our hospital, with its size, can only handle emergency surgeries – and this week we saw that it cannot. I don’t know if we necessarily need a new hospital. This clarifies to me that we need another hospital. Maybe a separate permanent hospital or an adjacent hospital for elective surgery and keep the one we have in service for emergency procedures, ”he said.


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