The Mobile Medical Unit is equipped with its winter woollies and is heading north once again!
On February 9, the MMU will be driving to Prince George to provide medical surge support to UHNBC, serving as the minor treatment area for the duration of the Canada Winter Games.
Last year, the MMU embarked on its longest deployment to date, supporting Kitimat General Hospital as the hospital underwent renovations to its emergency department. Like the deployment to Kitimat, the team has taken extra steps to ensure the unit is safe both for patients and staff safety but also to protect the unit itself and its clinical equipment from harsh weather.
“We have undertaken substantial measures to prepare the unit to withstand the cold including adding insulated skirts, heating units for the back-up generators, plumbing insulation to ensure our pipes don’t freeze and antifreeze flush of all the systems,” said Jesse Veenstra, manager, planning and operations. “The unit itself will be protected and importantly, will keep all of our staff, patients and equipment warm and safe.”
In addition to winterizing the unit, the MMU also has a new custom entrance ramp for the unit, as the existing one would not fit in alignment with the ER department at UHNBC. This new ramp comes out of the MMU at a 90-degree angle and has been tested to ensure stretchers can easily be maneuvered on it.
During the anticipated four week deployment, MMU clinical and facility personnel will be on-site from February 9 to 14 to oversee set up, as well as provide education to UHNBC staff who will be working in the unit.
For this deployment the MMU will be supporting Northern Health and UHNBC, not the event itself, as the unit’s first priority is to support the health authorities and the communities they serve to maintain continuity of care.
This deployment is Northern Health’s planned operational deployment for the 2015 year. As a shared provincial resource, the unit makes a planned visit to each health authority every year.
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