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Emergency Room Visits Spike In SBGHC Hospitals

An aging population, rather than the flu, is being attributed to a spike in the number of people visiting emergency rooms at South Bruce Grey Health Centre hospitals.

President and CEO Paul Rosebush says like other hospital corporations across the province, they have been experiencing above-normal volumes in emergency rooms and inpatient admissions since Christmas.

He says they had about a 20%¬†increase in patient volumes in emergency rooms across their four sites in January, although their doctors are not seeing an unusual number of flu cases, adding they say there’s not a single issue standing out above the rest.

“Sometimes we have some elderly folks that require some extra care, we’ve seen uploading, though I don’t have any statistics, on accidents as well, that has required additional time and care,” says Rosebush. “So our physicians say it’s just the regular business as usual, but it’s a higher volume.”

Rosebush says the simplest explanation for busy emergency rooms is an aging population, so it’s something the hospital anticipates seeing more often in the future.

“It’s no secret that in Grey and Bruce, that we’re more mature communities and we expect that… year-over-year to have a bigger impact on the level of care required in each of our hospitals,” says Rosebush.

Rosebush says emergency rooms continue to be busy, adding they remained between 20-30% above normal volumes as recently as Tuesday.