Report calls ER at Lakeshore General Hospital in Quebec a ‘ticking time bomb’

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Lakeshore General Hospital crisis equated to ‘ticking time bomb’ in new report
A new report likens the crisis at the Lakeshore General Hospital in Pointe-Claire, to a ticking time bomb. The author claims that the overcrowding problem and lack of medical staff is creating a perfect storm. As Global's Tim Sargeant reports, more than a dozen recommendations are being made in an attempt to remedy the crisis. – Nov 1, 2022

The author of a 317-page report studying the health-care crisis in the emergency room at the Lakeshore General Hospital in Pointe-Claire, Que., concludes the situation is a “ticking time bomb.”

“The consequences for the clientele are extremely worrying … as are those for the health-care professionals,” writes Marie Boucher of the Conseil GDF mediation firm.

“The rate of overtime is extremely excessive in three quarters of all work,” she writes, adding “the ER only manages to function because of the overtime.”

Fourteen recommendations are being made to end the health-care crisis. Among them are hiring 30 more health-care professionals and making sure they’re not wasting time looking for equipment they need to treat patients.

“We do understand that it’s not going to happen tomorrow morning that they’re going to find 30 health-care professionals out of the blue. It’s a Quebec-wide shortage,” Kristina Hoare, VP of Nursing Union West Island, tells Global News.

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Hoare says a meeting is planned with the management team of the regional health authority, the CIUSSS de l’Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal. She hopes the employer will agree to implement all 14 recommendations.

One patient’s rights advocate says some health-care changes can be made now to lessen the load on nurses and others that improve health care for all.

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Paul Brunet says treating seniors at home for non-emergency care instead of sending them to hospital would free up hospital beds.

“It’s a problem of managing, better managing the beds and the people who are occupying the beds,” he told Global News.

It’s a feeling shared by Quebec’s health minister, who questions why ERs at some hospitals are better than others in handling overcrowding problems with a limited number of medical staff.

“There is sometimes an implementation or execution problem,” Christian Dubé said.

Hoare says if the nurse’s union and the employer of the hospital can’t agree on implementing all 14 recommendations of the report, the conflict may go to arbitration, where a final decision will be made by a judge.

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In an email to Global News, Hélène Bergeron-Gamache, a spokesperson for the CIUSSS de l’Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal, said they are currently “studying the recommendations.”

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