Code Orange at Ross Memorial
Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) has been caring for higher than expected patient volumes for months.
This began to reach critical levels in early June. Yesterday morning, RMH declared an internal “Code Orange.” This designation is invoked when Hospital operations are severely compromised by patient volume over-capacity, requiring RMH to implement a procedure to coordinate safe and effective patient care.
It is important to note that all clinics will continue, surgeries will be performed today, and our Emergency Department remains open. There is no restriction to Hospital access.
The Hospital normally operates 158 beds. RMH has been providing care to as many as 180 admitted patients. Challenges have included prolonged stays in the Emergency Department for admitted patients, and providing additional staff to care for patients. The Hospital’s analysis of the cause is related to over-capacity with Alternate Level of Care (ALC) patients. These are patients who no longer need care in an acute care hospital, and are waiting placement in more appropriate facilities, such as long-term care. Traditionally, about 45 of the Hospital’s patients are ALC. In the past two months, the number has grown to 60. This has created ongoing patient gridlock.
Yesterday morning on July 10, 2018 there were 179 patients admitted into the Hospital, including 60 ALC patients. In addition, there were 20 patients in the Emergency Department awaiting an inpatient bed. This creates the total patient demand for care at 199 patients.
RMH has been in constant communications with the Central East Local Health Integration Network since early June. Home and Community Care have been maximally engaged to facilitate patient discharges back to their homes.
The Management Team, physicians and staff are working hour to hour to facilitate patient’s receiving the appropriate care in the appropriate care areas. The hospital is grateful for the extraordinary efforts made by all to care for their patients.