ST CROIX, U.S. Virgin Islands, DECEMBER 13, 2021 – Contrary to what has been recently communicated by some media outlets, Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center’s (“JFL”) Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and Emergency Room (ER) remain open and caring for patients. JFL has suffered staffing challenges and has been using Pafford Medical Services to augment JFL’s critical staffing needs. Due to the current staffing shortage, when a patient count exceeds safe standards, JFL evaluates and transfers care to an accepting hospital.
At this moment, JFL is currently at capacity within the ICU due to a staffing shortage. Hospital staff and administration are actively working with the Virgin Islands Department of Health and Pafford Medical Services to provide additional nursing support. During our update this morning, JFL was promised 6 Registered Nurses and 6 paramedics to arrive, shortly, through the Pafford Medical Services.
JFL is not diverting all ICU patients. At this time, JFL has made a determination that based on the staff-to-patient ratio, each patient will be assessed and it will be determined at that time if a transfer is medically necessary.
There is a plan for $8 million American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“ARPA”) funding for recruitment and retention through the Office of Governor Bryan. We await the receipt of the first tranche of funding to retain, recruit, and provide employment opportunities.
“Our desire is to always do what is best for our patients. At times such as this, this includes transferring patients to partnering hospitals that can provide critical care. We continue to work to identify opportunities for resolution of this issue. We thank our dedicated ICU doctors, nurses, and support persons for their continued dedication to our patients and community.” – Dyma B. Williams, BSN, RN, CPHRM, MJ, Interim Chief Executive Officer
Dyma B. Williams, BSN, RN, CPHRM, MJ, is Interim Chief Executive Officer for Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center. The goal for both JFL and Dyma B. Williams, is to maintain integrity and transparency with patients and the St. Croix community.
JFL will continue to keep the public updated and keep patient care at the center of decisions as it navigates through staffing levels. This includes communications with the Department of Health regarding staffing levels and the continued need for Pafford.