The emergencies of the Grenoble University Hospital in degraded mode “at least until the end of the summer” according to the director

From Monday June 27, the CHU Grenoble Alpes emergency room will operate in degraded mode at night, from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. You must call 15 before going there. A situation that will last at least “all summer” told us this Friday the director of the CHU Monique Sorrentino.

For lack of doctors, CHU Grenoble emergency room Alps are forced to reorganize and will operate in degraded mode at night, from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m., from Monday June 27. No closure but a call to 15 mandatory before possibly moving, except in the event of vital or pediatric emergencies. How long will this last? Are there any recruitments planned? Answers from the director of the CHU Grenoble Alpes, Monique Sorrentino, guest of the 6/9 of France Bleu Isère this Friday.

France Bleu Isère: This new organization was decided on because of a lack of doctors. Can you tell us how many staff are missing today to operate normally?

Monique Sorrentino : The health system has not fully recovered from the covid crisis so we see, both in city medicine and in clinics or hospitals, that we have not recovered our previous level of activity and that we have to deal with a lot of demands with difficulty. Very occasionally, on emergency physicians, we have a vacancy rate of 33%, which gives the Grenoble University Hospital 23 emergency workers we are looking to recruit on a need of 70. We have been in these difficulties for several months, at home, but also in the emergency services of private clinics and that we hold. We’ve been able to function for ten months, but there we have a further deterioration in our workforce, which means that we have to switch to adapted functioning. But it’s organized and, in any case, all vital emergencies remain completely taken care of, you shouldn’t be worried about this subject.

You talk about adaptation and obviously not closing emergencies…

All emergency services remain open 24 hours a day. There are patients, there are doctors, there are nurses running these emergency services. There, in fact, we are accelerating a movement that we had already put in place: trying to redirect patients who, spontaneously, present themselves to the emergency room towards a whole bunch of other devices. And there, we really have to thank all the work that is done in the outpatient city medicine sector, with the doctors and nurses but also the pharmacists who organize medical centers on duty, care that makes it possible to ensure continuity of care but in a system that is strained almost everywhere.

It is also a change of reflexes finally, to tell potential patients not to necessarily go to the emergency room directly, but to try to see with the doctor during the day or the Samu if there is a problem?

Absolutely, the doctor during the day and the care structures that exist in town. There are on-call medical homes, there are on-call sectors with doctors who commit to providing care until midnight. And then, actually, instead of systematically coming to the emergency room, call 15 first, which will really direct the request so that we can preserve our teams. I believe that the strong message is also to say that health professionals are extremely mobilized. They were during covid, they were before, they still are today. But it is true that we have not yet recovered from the crisis and that we must preserve the teams which are still there and which provide a truly excellent quality of care.

And this organization is starting next week, but for how long? At least summer?

I don’t think we’ll be able to do better during the summer. You should know that every summer, regardless of the current crisis we are experiencing, it is always a little more difficult because on the one hand, we have to give our staff time off and we are committed to it, and on the other hand, the arrival of new recruits from nursing schools is awaited. We will try to get them to arrive during the summer but they arrive more massively in September, so we will have greater flexibility at that time. And then, at the level of medical personnel, we have recruitment prospects, we know that we will be able to recruit many more people if overall, everything is put back in place in the whole of the health system. There, we have closed beds so it’s difficult since patients stay longer in the emergency room waiting for a hospital bed and that means that we have emergency departments that are full of patients.

Most for these recruitments, I am quite optimistic. So there is a little latency, the time for new recruits to be trained, of course. But where it is very important is that at the same time, especially in the case of Ségur de la santé, we are reorganizing the care pathways. We work in a much more coordinated way between all the players in the city and in hospitalization. And that is really a great hope for the health professions to find meaning in the work they do.

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