The Granite Falls Municipal Hospital & Manor has hired and will employ their own providers to care for patients in their emergency department. This shift in model to care for patients in the emergency department is to be able to increase the quality of care given to the patients.
Up until now, the emergency department has been staffed by a company called Acute Care Incorporated. Acute Care Incorporated is locum tenens organization who staffs emergency departments on a substitute basis. These substitute providers have no ties to the area or the patients they care for. The contract for those services will end effective December 1st, 2016.
The hospital and its board of directors put forth a goal to hire five total providers to staff the emergency department full-time. To date, they have four accepted offers and signed contracts. The four individuals that have accepted to date include, Fred Altamirano, PA-C, Heather Reeve, PA-C, Melissa Magstadt, CNP, and Holly York, CNP. They are confident in hiring a fifth provider and are in current conversations with an individual.
All four of the signed providers come with a wealth of knowledge and experience and have stated their commitment to providing the highest quality emergency care. On top of their vast experience in emergency medicine, each of the providers will be going through a rigorous training schedule, led by Dr. Darrel Carter to ensure they are skilled and efficient with the latest standards/benchmarks in emergency care.
To further improve the quality of the department, Granite Falls Municipal Hospital & Manor is working with Avera to equip the emergency room with a product from Avera out of Sioux Falls called eEmergency. This system is a telehealth system linking rural hospitals to a fully staffed hub of board-certified emergency physicians and seasoned emergency nurses. The two-way video system allows rural facilities to access the support services of a Level-II trauma center, including the presence of emergency and other specialty physicians and nursing support for transfer coordination, documentation, and procedural support.
Reducing time between patient care and physician access allows for faster diagnosis and treatment, translating into improved recoveries and lives saved. . The supportive nature of eEmergency closely follows the care model practiced in larger facilities, offering support to rural physicians who cover all the medical needs of our community. eEmergency also supports the nursing staff by providing a peer nurse resource that can assist with arranging transfers, making necessary calls to on-call staff, and completing real-time documentation as care is delivered.
This product is a form of telemedicine that will allow the provider in the emergency department to contact a virtual hospital in Sioux Falls and have access to board certified emergency department physicians which can act as a consulting physician in any situation that is presented.
Tom Kooiman, CEO, states “The move to Advance Practice Professionals employed by Granite Falls Municipal Hospital & Manor, along with the support of Avera’s eEmergency, will greatly enhance the quality of emergency services delivered to our community”.
Granite Falls Municipal Hospital & Manor is planning to host an open house for the public to meet and greet these new providers as members of the hospital and community as soon as all of them have officially joined.