Be prepared for ‘much longer than normal wait times’ in ER, SickKids warns parents


Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Kids is warning sufferers that its emergency division is presently experiencing past regular wait occasions and is warning them to come back ready.

In a tweet posted Tuesday night, the analysis and pediatric hospital, also called SickKids, says it’s seeing extraordinarily excessive affected person volumes and “for much longer than regular wait occasions” for non-emergency points.

The hospital says the sickest sufferers can be seen first.

Jason Fischer, division head of emergency medication at SickKids, mentioned the hospital’s emergency division has develop into overcrowded due an early viral season, a scarcity of entry to care locally and staffing shortages on the hospital on account of sickness and a decreased workforce. He mentioned kids are again to highschool and they’re getting sick with coughs, colds and fever. 

“What we hear from households is they’re having bother accessing care locally,” he mentioned. “They’re having problem seeing their household physician, or their pediatrician, or utilizing their native pressing care, or their native emergency division.”

SickKids recommends that households contemplating a visit to its emergency room do the next:

  • Name their household physician, discover out their availability and what they suggest if a toddler is sick after hours.
  • Go to for sources. The web site offers clear directions about when dad and mom and caregivers ought to search care for his or her little one.
  • Use the hospital’s 24/7 symptom checker instrument on its Digital Pressing Care platform to assist decide if a toddler wants an ED go to or could possibly be handled by a main care supplier. 
  • Get vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19 and flu to lower the burden of sickness and hold kids more healthy.
  • If a go to to the emergency division is so as, sufferers ought to come ready with water bottles, nut-free snacks, cellphone chargers and leisure for his or her wait.

Usually in October, the hospital would plan for about 220 to 230 sufferers at its emergency division over a 24-hour interval, however on Monday, the hospital’s ER noticed greater than 300 sufferers and that included some who had already taken benefit of its digital pressing care.

Final week, the Kids’s Hospital of Japanese Ontario in Ottawa tweeted an analogous message that its emergency division was experiencing heavy volumes and requested sufferers to come back ready with snacks, blankets and toys to make the wait as snug as potential.

Doris Grinspun, CEO of the Registered Nurses’ Affiliation of Ontario, mentioned Ontario’s controversial Invoice 124 is in charge for the health-care staffing disaster. Invoice 124 is a legislation handed in 2019 that limits wage will increase at one per cent per 12 months for Ontario Public Service staff in addition to broader public sector employees, together with nurses and lecturers.

“Invoice 124 must go. What we want desperately within the province to retain the nurses we’ve … is aggressive compensation,” she mentioned. 

Mayssia Elajami mentioned her son got here again from day care final Wednesday wanting very drained. Tylenol did not work. The following day, Elajami referred to as her household physician at St. Michael’s Hospital to say her son had a fever and he was not consuming. She was informed to take him to SickKids. The household waited seven hours. 

From 12 midday to 4 p.m., they waited in a single space, then have been moved to a different space that appeared like a cafeteria.

Her son’s fever was excessive and discharge was popping out of his eyes. She mentioned she and her husband have been getting upset. Finally, a health care provider noticed her son. However she mentioned anyone must be accountable for the lengthy wait occasions.

“I wanted anyone to assist my son. And that is after I informed my husband, go, please get assist as a result of I began to cry,” she mentioned.

“There must be extra help for SickKids from the authorities.”


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