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Team Spotlight: Samantha Townes

We asked GBGH Manager of ICU, Critical Care & Allied Health, Samantha Townes, about her role at GBGH.  

What is your role at GBGH?

As Manager of Critical Care & Allied Health, my role is to support my teams in day-to-day operations, as well as lead any projects or quality initiatives that we identify both as a group and corporately. We are regularly evaluating that the care we provide is of the upmost quality and that our actions are aligned with our strategic goals and values.

What is one thing you love about your role?

The team! I have worked very closely with the Critical Care team since I started at GBGH, and they continue to impress me with their passion, dedication and resilience. All of my team members are so dedicated to their respectful professions, and it is really a privilege to be able to work alongside them. 

Tell us a bit about our ICU?

Our ICU is designated a Level 3 Basic ICU, is the second highest designation an ICU can receive in Ontario with the exception of specialty units. Our team cares for some of the most complex and acutely ill patients in our region in our 6-bed unit, as well up to 10 medical/surgical patient’s cardiac activity through our telemetry monitoring system. While we have invested in the technology to ensure excellent care for our patients, the patient rooms haven’t been updated since the hospital was built in 1976. One of the biggest challenges we face are the clunky, outdated doors to each room, which get stuck, have broken blinds and do not give the team full visibility to those in our care.

Sounds like you need new doors! How would this investment support excellent care in the ICU?

Modern ICU doors offer complete visibility from floor to ceiling, so that a nurse/team member can check on patients at a glance. Our nurses can identify a change in a patient’s condition based on many factors, whether it be through the bedside monitoring system, physical appearance, medications infusing, right down to making sure tubes and lines are in place. Having the room in full visibility is critical, while supporting their privacy and space when appropriate. When doors are stuck or defective, it can be very challenging to move the patient bed or gain access to the room in
a hurry. New doors will slide much more effectively, protecting our nurses from injury and ensuring their focus is on caring for patients.

How can the community help?  

We have approval from leadership to install new ICU doors, but we need the funding to pay for them. We have seven doors to replace, at a cost of approximately $10,000 each. The new doors will help our team care for you, and bring our ICU rooms from the 70s into the 21st century!

For those wishing to help transform the ICU, donations can be made by visiting or calling 705-526-GIVE (4483).

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