Emergency Department

Whether it's a sprained ankle from a run on the boardwalk or a life-threatening heart attack, the emergency staff at Shore Medical Center is ready, willing and able to help.

Shore Medical Center's Emergency Department is staffed with board-certified emergency medicine physicians, with training in everything from obstetrics and pediatrics to orthopedics and cardiology. In addition, pediatric physician specialists are on duty at Shore 24 hours a day and are readily available to consult with physicians in our Emergency Department. A rooftop helipad is available for emergency airlifting of patients for specialized trauma treatment.

As a Primary Stroke Center recognized by the Joint Commission, our emergency department staff and physicians are specially trained in the care and treatment of stroke patients and are skilled in administering rt-PA, the "clot busting" medication that can save lives when administered in time. We also provide 24-hour neurology and neurosurgery physician care. Additionally, Shore’s stroke center team provides education programs for local emergency medical services personnel to help them identify stroke signs.

The Emergency Department staff uses a triage system to separate the most serious injuries and illnesses from more minor conditions. 

Pediatric Emergency Care

About one-quarter of Shore Medical Center's emergency patients are children. Because children are not just small versions of adults, they require a special kind of emergency care.

Shore Medical Center Emergency Department staff uses The Breslow system to help emergency personnel quickly correlate a child’s size to a chart indicating the most suitable equipment and medications. Color-coded emergency carts are already stocked with appropriately sized equipment and doses of medicine. Saving precious time and precious lives.

Emergency Management Information Resources

New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services
Home page includes “In Our Spotlight” box listing current topics. The site also provides listings of state “programs & services.” For information on communicable diseases, claick that heading then click “environmental health,” then click “communicable diseases” for related fact sheets. You may need an “Acrobat Reader” program to access info on this site.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Contains up-to-date information about nearly a hundred different diseases, includes fact sheets and images of infectious agents and links to other sources.

National Foundation for Infectious Diseases
Provides general information on infectious diseases and fact sheets, includes links to other sources.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Provides general information on food safety, info about National Food Safety Initiative, links to other sites.

Food Safety Fight BAC! Campaign
The web site of the Partnership for Food Safety Education, a coalition of industry government and consumer groups. It provides information geared to help reduce the incidence of food-borne illness, includes general information, educational artwork, a chart of least wanted food-born pathogens, prevention tips, and many links to other sites.

What to Expect from Door to Discharge

Triage

When you arrive at Shore Medical Center's Emergency Department, you'll be assessed by the triage nurse. The Emergency Department team uses the Emergency Severity Index (ESI) - a five-level triage scale to improve patient flow through the emergency department system. The word triage is derived from the French trier, meaning to sort or choose. The five-level system enables Shore's triage nurses to greet incoming patients, assess their symptoms, vital signs, medical history and medications so that the most seriously ill and injured patients are seen first.

Placement

After you've been assessed by the triage nurse you may be placed in the treatment area or lounge and any necessary testing will begin. Remember not to eat or drink while you are waiting for treatment without first checking with the triage staff.

Treatment

In the treatment area you will receive further evaluation by a physician who is a specialist in emergency medicine. Additional testing and treatments will be performed as indicated by your medical exam. These studies may take some time but are needed to complete your treatment plan. During the summer months we may direct you to our Quick Care Center for evaluation and treatment of minor illnesses and injuries.

Registration

Registration information and identification will be requested once your treatment has begun. It is important to supply current and accurate local (and vacation) addresses and phone numbers, as well as the name of a contact person. We may need to contact you with important results or follow-up care after your visit. You will need to supply insurance information and applicable co-pays at the desk of the exit registrar upon discharge from the Emergency Department.

Visitors

Your privacy and confidentiality are very important to us. Therefore, we ask you limit visitation of your family and friends to one visitor at the bedside. Special circumstances may determine the number of visitors allowed. All pediatric patients younger than 18 may have both parents or guardians accompany them into the treatment area.

Admission

Your condition may necessitate admission to Shore Medical Center. After your admission is processed an orderly will take you to your room.

Penn Heart Rescue

Through the Penn Heart Rescue Program at Shore Medical Center, patients who arrive at Shore's Emergency Department with symptoms of a STEMI heart attack (a heart attack that is diagnosed by a 12-lead electrocardiogram or EKG) can be referred immediately to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center in Philadelphia, part of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Shore Medical Center's Emergency Department makes the initial assessment for the heart attack patient based on the results of an EKG exam. With just one phone call to the Penn Heart Rescue team, the emergency angioplasty team assembles at Penn Presbyterian and the helicopter prepares for take off from Shore. While the helicopter is en route, a flight nurse and flight paramedic trained in critical care medicine perform essential tests and prepare the patient for the emergency angioplasty. The flight team provides a level of continuing treatment similar to the care received in the emergency room. This way, no time is lost during the 25-minute helicopter flight from Somers Point to Philadelphia. When a patient arrives at Penn Presbyterian, he or she is rushed immediately into the cardiac catheterization laboratory for the procedure. The catheterization laboratories and surgical suites are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Health professionals are available from cardiology, cardiovascular surgery, vascular medicine, pulmonary and critical care medicine, and other specialty areas as needed. After immediate evaluation and treatment at Penn Presbyterian, patients are then able to return to Shore Medical Center and their local physicians for continuation of care close to home. For more information about Penn Heart Rescue, call 1-800-789-PENN (7366).