The Maritimes' only tertiary care children's emergency
The IWK Health Centre has the only tertiary care children's emergency in the Maritimes, and the only level 1 pediatric trauma centre east of Quebec.
The emergency department sees approximately 28,000 patients per year, providing care to ill and injured children and youth. Our patients range in age from newborn to 19 years old.
A crisis team, made up of social workers and psychologists, provides assessment and arranges for care of children and youth with mental health care needs. This team also assists families experiencing stressful and difficult situations.
Community Resource Navigation
So many of the families who visit the Pediatric Emergency Department have adverse social determinants of health and need some extra support in one or more of several realms such as isolation, parenting support, financial challenges, mental health and addictions. Although these are not necessarily the issues that they identify when they present to Emergency, it becomes clear that they adversely affect the health of the child and family.
There are a multitude of community resources (pdf 445KB) that are available to assist and support families but it is almost impossible for Emergency physicians and nurses to maintain the knowledge necessary to help families access them: Where are these resources? Do the resources only support certain age groups? How are they accessed?
We are now connected with the IWK/Community Health Team navigators, Ms. Monique Yazbek and Ms. Heather Beaton and these professionals are now available to our families/youth and children. We have just completed a Community Resource Week in Pediatric Emergency Departments. The navigators have introduced themselves and their service to our staff. They have created a “one stop” portal to community resources. We can refer our children/youth/families to them during an Emergency visit. They work in the community and will meet with families within a few days to assess their needs and navigate them to appropriate services. We are hoping that this will provide a significant new approach to some of the needs we recognize.