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University Hospital’s Emergency Department Recognized with Emergency Nurses Association 2021 Crisis Response Team Award

University Hospital Emergency Department One of Three Departments Honored Nationally

University Hospital (UH), New Jersey’s state hospital, announced today that it has been awarded the 2021 Crisis Response Team Award from the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA), the nation’s premier professional association dedicated to defining the future of emergency nursing. The award, one of only three awarded nationally, recognizes excellence in emergency nursing and emergency department performance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Crisis Response Team Award, one of 12 annual awards offered by the ENA, honors emergency department healthcare teams that have risen above-and-beyond to achieve ENA’s mission through their response to the challenges of working during public health crises, like the COVID-19 pandemic, and natural or man-made disasters. The Emergency Nurses Association consists of more than 50,000 members and represents emergency nursing, provides education, issues peer-reviewed journals, and publishes professional guidelines with up-to-date emergency care data.

As COVID-19 cases continue in New Jersey, University Hospital’s Emergency Department has been integral to treating and admitting patients during the multiple waves of COVID-19 in the City of Newark and surrounding region. Before and throughout the pandemic, the UH Emergency Department team has committed themselves to community, providing the highest quality care and treatment, handing patients off to inpatient units, and working heroically to heal and save some of the sickest patients in their care.

In particular, the ENA recognized University Hospital’s Emergency Department for developing a triage and treatment tent, set up just outside the Emergency Department, to care for over 2,500 patients during the height of the pandemic. During the highest hospital utilization days, the tent served a peak volume of 88 patients when the hospital was overwhelmed with patients.

“Everyone in the University Hospital community pitched in to help throughout the pandemic. Nobody said ‘no’ when asked to lend a hand,” said Carl Kirton, Chief Nursing Officer of University Hospital. “While we were navigating the highest peak periods of cases, every hour brought with it the need to make difficult decisions. The thing that got us through was everyone working together and making crucial and necessary adjustments to keep those around us – patients and staff – as safe as possible.”

“We are deeply honored to be among the few healthcare institutions nationally to be awarded ENA’s Crisis Response Team Award. Our Emergency Department’s response during COVID-19 has been tremendous and they literally are saving lives each and every day,” said Shereef Elnahal, MD, MBA, President and CEO of University Hospital. “Our Emergency Department and our entire hospital family have performed heroically during the COVID-19 pandemic and we deeply appreciate their commitment to the health and wellness of our community. Each member of our staff plays a key role in keeping our operation moving forward and we appreciate their dedication during these unprecedented times.”

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