Southern NH Medical Center’s Emergency Team Faces COVID Surge with Strength and Dedication

The surge in COVID-19 cases is challenging for staff and patients alike. At points over the past few weeks, the Intensive Care Unit and inpatient units at Southern New Hampshire Medical Center  have been full and even overflowing as nurses and doctors work harder than ever to fight COVID-19 while keeping pace with significant need for care from other illness and injuries. As a result, sick patients in the Emergency Department who need to be admitted must wait for longer periods than usual. SNHMC has flexed to use space outside the Emergency Department for patients who are awaiting a bed in the hospital, as a temporary step in caring for as many patients as possible.
As New Hampshire experiences unprecedented rates of new COVID-19 cases, experts are asking for the public’s help in reducing the spread by taking some simple but effective preventive measures. Dr. Joseph Cardeiro, Emergency Medicine Physician, says, “I am proud to provide care for the community, and I ask that we all follow public health guidelines—get vaccinated, social distance, wear a mask, and stay home if you feel sick.


Nurses are dedicated to serving the community. The commitment remains steady even in the most difficult of times. “We help people on their worst days. During each shift we see how we make a difference,” says Mary Scott, Emergency Nursing Director.
Says Eileen Barrett, Emergency Department Nurse, “We have a unique team—to make it through this surge, we must be the cohesive, supportive team that we are. Seeing patients die because of COVID is so hard on us. It takes a toll. Even though it is hard right now, being a nurse is a dream of dreams for me. I know I am making a difference.”

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Despite the challenges and strain, Scott says the ED team is still standing strong and dedicated to providing care the community needs. “This is an exceptional team of people,” she says. “The first COVID-19 surge in March was terrifying for us all. Now we are facing yet another surge, and while it’s still hard, this time we know what we are facing; we know how to manage it. We’re ready.” 

Posted: 12/23/2021