New Emergency Room Opens

March 13, 2018

At 7:48pm on March 12, 2018, Marie Rose Austine arrived at St. Boniface Hospital complaining of chest pain and shorness of breath. But instead of being brought into SBHF's old, cramped Emergency Room, Marie Rose was directed to the brand new Center for Infectious Disease and Emergency Care (CIDEC) as the first-ever patient in the brand new Emergency Department! Thanks to USAID's American Schools and Hospitals Abroad program which, through the generosity of the American people, provided funding to build this beautiful space, and Build Health International for their exceptional construction work. 

Entrance to the new SBHF Emergency Department

Marie Rose is 72 years old, and had been having shorness of breath and chest pains for about a week before she came to St. Boniface Hospital. She lives in Petit Goave, about two hours by car from St. Boniface in Fond des Blancs. When she entered the Emergency Department she was immediately seen by a nurse who assessed her condition, and doctors who began tests like and EKG and cardiac ultrasound, to determine the cause of Marie Rose's chest pains.

marie rose being seen in the ED triage room
Danica triages a patient in the new Emergency Room

The new Emergency Department gives SBHF's staff much more room and equpiment to triage and treat patients who come for urgent care, like Marie Rose. The triage room provides space for quick tests and classifying patients by level of urgency (using a scale of green, yellow, orange, and red) to help prioritize each patient's next steps. 

Next, Marie Rose moved to a consultation room for further tests and conversations with the Emergency Department staff. Since she was the first patient to recieve care in the new Emergency Department, and new staff have joined the team as we move into the new building, both Dr. Danica Gomes and Dr. Mirielle Bien-Aimé worked with Marie Rose, alongside three of the nursing team members. Everyone was excited about the new space, and ability to provide patients like Marie Rose with the best possible care. 

ED team works with Marie Rose in the consultation room
Nurses in the ED consultation room

The team dedided, in consultation with Marie Rose, that she should stay at the hospital overnight for observation and further tests. With an initial diagnosis of heart arhythmia, everyone wanted to be sure her condition was under control before she goest home. So Marie Rose moved into the main area of the Emergency Department, where, as the first-ever patient in the ward, she had her pick of the 17 beds. 

ED ward without patients
Marie Rose rests in the Emergency Department

Marie Rose will return home with medications and a connection to St. Boniface Hospital's outpatient program and pharmacy care for follow-up care. She is the first of hundreds of peopel who will get care in the new Emergency Department just this month, and first of thousands who will be cared for there in the months and years to come. 

Thanks to all who have made this new facility possible, and all of the staff who work there day in and day out. If you want to support them and their work please visit

Emergency room entrance at night