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SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. — Some sufferers at Harbourside Well being Centre have discovered themselves with out in-person medical take care of the following few months.
The choice follows the departure of a nurse practitioner, who noticed 700 of the centre’s 4,500 sufferers.
“That’s a panel (a bunch of sufferers assigned to a major care crew) that we’ve by no means actually been in a position to get protection for,” stated Susan Chappell, supervisor at Harbourside Well being Centre. “These are those which might be primarily affected.”
Of these 700 sufferers, most have been – or shortly will probably be – assigned to a brand new supplier. Some sufferers will probably be cared for by one other doctor or nurse practitioner elsewhere within the community, whereas others could return to Harbourside upon the return of a nurse practitioner in early 2024.
The remaining 3,800 sufferers, in the meantime, are unaffected.
Throughout the transition interval, these with out in-person care have entry to digital well being care by means of Maple while not having to enroll in the affected person registry.
A scarcity of care just isn’t a brand new difficulty at Harbourside. In 2021, two of three physicians left.
“Since that point, we’ve by no means had our full complement of suppliers. The remaining workers have actually been working very onerous to handle all these sufferers,” stated Chappell. “However over time, it’s simply change into an excessive amount of.”
Harbourside workers stepped as much as hold these sufferers within the clinic by hiring extra nurse practitioners and switching to a nurse-practitioner-led mannequin – ideally with six NPs collaborating with one physician.
“Then we bumped into some private depart points over there all through that point,” stated Chappell. “So we’ve by no means had all six nurse practitioners working without delay.”
A press launch from Well being P.E.I. defined that a lot of the affected sufferers have been assigned a brand new supplier, or can have in-person protection throughout the subsequent 4 months.
“For the previous two years, workers on the Harbourside Well being Centre Affected person Medical House have offered care to greater than 4,500 sufferers, regardless of the departure of three physicians and ongoing recruitment challenges,” stated Andrew MacDougall, govt director of group well being and seniors care with Well being P.E.I.
“The small crew at Harbourside has been going above and past to help the healthcare wants of the centre. However our workers can’t proceed at that tempo, it’s not sustainable, and we have to help them.”
“Since that point, we’ve by no means had our full complement of suppliers. The remaining workers have actually been working very onerous to handle all these sufferers … However over time, it’s simply change into an excessive amount of.” – Susan Chappell
Regardless of the departures and absences, Chappell is happy with the workers for his or her efforts in supporting sufferers amongst absences over the past two years.
Nonetheless, as a lot because the clinic has been getting on nicely sufficient with the nurse-practitioner-led mannequin, Chappell would like to see extra physicians employed at Harbourside to additional help within the affected person load and stated there’s recruiting happening for these positions.
“The nurse practitioners have their impartial panels they usually’re managing these panels very nicely and really appropriately,” stated Chappell. “It’s extra about offering that subsequent stage of experience, and for the extra difficult sufferers.”
Kristin Gardiner is a reporter with SaltWire in Prince Edward Island. She could be reached by e mail at [email protected] and adopted on X @KristinGardiner.