New Emergency Department Chief focused on a preventative and personalized approach to care

Dr. Terence Woods has been an emergency physician at Arnprior Regional Health (ARH) for nearly 10 years and was recently appointed as the new Chief of the Emergency Department (ED) – taking over for Dr. Mark Borzecki, who provided his leadership for the past eight years.

Dr. Woods began his emergency medicine career in Deep River where he gained experience before coming to ARH. His wife and three kids have since made West Ottawa their home and Dr. Woods also works a few shifts at the Carleton Place & District Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Terence Woods, Emergency Department Chief

He talks about how he thrives in the fast-paced ED environment: “I love the intensity of emergency medicine, the lack of routine to my days or nights, and the opportunity to connect with patients and understand their complex needs.”

A commitment to a more personalized approach

ARH’s annual number of ED visits has remained stable; however, the number of complex patient cases (i.e. cancer, cardiovascular) has increased, impacting overall wait times for the community. The priority of reducing wait times is supported by a personalized approach that focuses on listening and understanding each patient’s full health story, resulting in better health outcomes for the community.

“I was attracted to working in smaller hospital because it allows me to practice more comprehensive medicine,” explained Dr. Woods. “By and large, most shifts allow me to spend time with each patient to understand the complexities of their health needs, which is key for preventative medicine.  By taking a few extra minutes to ask the rights questions, you get a better sense of the person’s lifestyle or medical issues that may be a factor and can potentially be addressed to avoid ongoing or future health concerns.”

A new ultrasound machine will mean lower wait times and better care

Dr. Woods has also identified that a pressing need for the ED is a new, upgraded ultrasound machine in order to increase the team’s efficiency.

“Using ultrasound in the ED has become more important,” said Dr. Woods. “The evidence stacks up that ultrasound is a safe, accessible test that can be used to rapidly and accurately identify or diagnose the urgent problem. This can reduce wait times, expedite necessary care and improve patient outcomes.”

The ultrasound can detect a wide range of conditions, for example: gallstones, kidney stones, internal bleeding and narrowing down the type of heart problem. And, it can be used on-demand in the ED saving the patient time and reducing costs because it avoids waiting for an x-ray or travelling to another hospital for a CAT scan.

With the support of the community, the ED plans to imminently upgrade their current ultrasound machine.

A vision for the Emergency Department

Dr. Woods and his team continue to look for opportunities to work more efficiently and further implement preventative medicine that will help address the growing demand for complex healthcare in the community.

“Everyone deserves to be within a reasonable distance to emergency care and it’s our team’s commitment to ensure the Arnprior community has access to high-quality care close to home, when they need it,” said Dr. Woods.