WESTFIELD — The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has awarded Baystate Noble Hospital’s Emergency Department a Level 3 Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA).
In 2014, ACEP, along with the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, the Emergency Nurses Assoc., and the American Geriatrics Society, developed and released geriatric ED guidelines, recommending measures ranging from adding geriatric-friendly equipment to specialized staff to more routine screening for delirium, dementia, and fall risk, among other vulnerabilities.
“We couldn’t be more proud to receive this accreditation. It spotlights our commitment to providing inclusive and patient-centered care for our senior patients,” said Ronald Bryant, president of Baystate Noble Hospital.
Level 3 accreditation signifies excellence in older adult care as represented by one or more geriatric-specific initiatives that are reasonably expected to elevate the level of elder care in one or more specific areas. Additionally, Emergency Department personnel are identified and trained to implement these efforts. Criteria for GED accreditation include staffing; education; policies, protocols, guidelines, and procedures; quality improvement; outcome measures; equipment and supplies; and physical environment.
“This designation acknowledges the personalized care our Emergency Department provides any senior adult who comes to us for emergency care,” said Dr. T. Britton Percy, chief medical officer at Baystate Noble Hospital. “Patient experience is important to us at Baystate Noble Hospital, and we are intent on meeting any special needs our senior adult patients may have.”
The GEDA program is the culmination of years of progress in emergency care of older adults. The ACEP accreditation requires hospital emergency departments to have both physicians and nurses on staff with specialized geriatric training; meet specific environmental criteria, such as ensuring easy patient access to water and mobility aids; and implement a geriatric quality-improvement program.
“This accreditation shows our efforts to advance our level of emergency care to better serve our patients in Westfield and the surrounding communities,” said Dr. Sundeep Shukla, chief of Emergency Medicine at Baystate Noble Hospital. “We have formed a team in the Emergency Department that will cater to the geriatric population, which is the fastest-growing group of patients that utilize Emergency Departments and emergency services. We are committed to playing a major role in improving care to the geriatric community.”