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Elk Point emergency department closed overnight on Sept. 29

Elk Point ED will be closed from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday.
File photo

ELK POINT - Alberta Health Services (AHS) is temporarily closing the emergency department at the Elk Point hospital, due to a lack of registered nursing staff and an inability to secure temporary coverage.

If sufficient coverage can be found, the emergency department could reopen sooner, according to a Wednesday Public Service Announcement from AHS.

From 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sept. 29, "there will be no staff available in the Elk Point Emergency Department. Patients are asked to call 911 if they have a medical emergency. Nurses will remain on site in Acute Care," according to AHS.

Patient safety and care remain the highest priorities for AHS, according to the PSA. AHS says it is working to ensure everyone receives the care they need, "through its partnership with EMS and a supportive regional network of healthcare centres."

"Recruitment of nurses is a challenge across North America. It can be particularly difficult outside of urban centres and with practitioners who bring specialty skills." 

Efforts to recruit trained professionals to the province continue to take place.