How can you make Muskoka safer?

Just in time for the population to swell for the summer, the South Muskoka Hospital Foundation is building two safe rooms in the emergency department of South Muskoka Memorial Hospital in Bracebridge.

These rooms will serve to protect vulnerable patients who are at high risk of harming themselves or others, while also enhancing the safety of other patients, staff, physicians and visitors.

Here’s how these rooms make Muskoka safer:

With the rising opioid use across the country, someone may arrive at Emergency in a state of agitation. Or they may come to us feeling depressed, anxious or in an uncertain state of mental health.

How do we protect these patients and their dignity, while keeping others in the same environment safe and comfortable?

The new safe rooms can benefit these patients while medical staff diagnose, monitor and treat them in a calm, private and secure area. Some may need to wait while to be transferred to other, more appropriate facilities to receive treatment. Safe rooms are also helpful for staff when dealing with patients who are aggressive, violent or display other challenging behaviours.

Last year, more than two dozen physical assaults were inflicted on hospital staff. Fortunately, no patients were harmed, but this is an unacceptable risk for staff. Although most individuals who require the use of safe rooms are not necessarily aggressive, they might be unpredictable or unaware of their actions and surroundings.

Safe rooms are also available to anyone who requires privacy, with the added benefit of security and protective features. For example, the patient is protected from potentially hazardous equipment and hospital gases. The dedicated washroom has fixtures designed to prevent self harm.

How can I help?

Safe rooms are all about respect and safety for everyone. But this is only achievable through your generosity by donating to the Foundation at healthmuskoka.ca.

With your donation, these secure rooms will enable protection, privacy and dignity, facilitate smooth transitions, and foster a culture of safety.

This year only, a matching grant has been provided by a local philanthropist. Your donation toward this campaign will be doubled, up to a total of $300,000, for all gifts in 2019.

How funding and donations are allocated:

The South Muskoka Hospital Foundation has committed $500,000 to the safe room project as part of the $2.1 million Emergency Care Campaign.

While the investment is significant, hospitals across Ontario have identified the need for safe rooms. While the government covers costs of general operating expenses at our hospital, it’s up to the community to raise funds for equipment and facilities such as the safe rooms. It’s easy to donate – call the Foundation office, drop in, or go online to healthmuskoka.ca.

And that’s how you can make Muskoka safer.


Website: healthmuskoka.ca

Social: Facebook, Instagram

Phone: 705-645-4404 ext. 3193

Address: 75 Ann St., Bracebridge, Ontario, P1L 2E4