PEMBROKE — As part of its commitment to deliver safe and high-quality care to every person, every encounter, every day, Pembroke Regional Hospital (PRH) is proud to announce it has joined Kids Health Alliance (KHA), a partnership aimed at enhancing the paediatric health system with providers who share a common goal of improving the health of children and youth in Ontario.
PRH is the first community hospital in eastern Ontario to join KHA which was founded in June, 2017 by CHEO, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.
“As a regional healthcare provider, we are always seeking ways to improve our services and bring care closer to home,” said PRH President and CEO Pierre Noel. “Being a part of Kids Health Alliance will enable our team to provide a high quality, consistent, coordinated approach in caring for our child and youth patient population through the sharing of specialized resources and expertise, and through collaboration on research and education.”
Initially, the partnership will focus on enhancing care for children and youth in the PRH Emergency Department (ED).
“The care of children and youth is a major clinical focus at PRH,” said Dr. Tom Hurley, Chief of Emergency, noting that nearly one in five of the hospital’s ED patients is under 18.
“We also know that kids in our region are more than twice as likely to visit the emergency department than kids in Ottawa,” Dr. Hurley said. “This fact has caused us to reach out to strengthen the care we provide not only in the ED, but throughout the hospital and into the community at large.”
Recognizing that KHA’s founders are leaders in paediatric care, and PRH already has successful partnerships with CHEO, Dr. Hurley said he looks forward to building on those successes to bring enhanced care closer to home in a more standardized manner.
Alex Munter, CHEO’s President and CEO, said, “The Kids Health Alliance is so pleased to welcome Pembroke Regional Hospital to the family. Having community partnerships with like-minded organizations who want to achieve a standard of excellence in paediatric care across the province is why we founded Kids Health Alliance. We look forward to building on CHEO’s already long history of working with the Pembroke Regional Hospital Emergency Department.”
Petawawa resident Jessi-Lee Barney is hopeful about the potential benefits of Kids Health Alliance for her community.
Ms. Barney, whose two-year-old daughter has a congenital heart defect that was discovered during an ED visit at PRH, said she relies on CHEO for regular cardiac monitoring. While she said her daughter’s condition is stable and slow to progress, she must currently travel to CHEO for echocardiograms and physician followup which she hopes, could one day be done at PRH, freeing up Ottawa-based appointments and reducing exam wait times for children who are more acutely ill.
As a Registered Nurse, Ms. Barney also acknowledged that she sees the benefit of the affiliation with KHA in terms of bringing additional expertise in the care of children and youth to front line care in Pembroke and having more resources available to draw from when working with children and youth.
Lauren Ettin, KHA’s Executive Director, said, “Working with community partners like Pembroke Regional Hospital, Kids Health Alliance will help bring about a coordinated approach to paediatric care in Ontario by ensuring effective communication between providers that put children, youth and their families at the centre of the care team.”