CEO Note: Update on PCH staffing and critical care planning

Good morning, 

As many of you are aware, since the changes to the ICU care model at the Prince County Hospital in May 2023, the PCH team has been operating a progressive care/intermediate care unit (PCU/IMCU). 

This month we are experiencing additional staffing challenges in respiratory therapy, nursing, and physicians at PCH that will require a temporary adjustment to the level of care that can be offered for now at the PCU.

The Executive Leadership Team has set up an emergency operations centre (EOC) that will help to make decisions and support local teams. A similar local leadership structure has been set up at PCH and QEH to work with frontline teams. 

Below is an overview of our current state in planning.

Critical care patients who would have been treated in the 8-bed PCU at PCH will be assessed for acuity beginning as early as Jan. 20th, as a temporary measure, due to staffing challenges.

We expect that patients with higher acuity will need to be transferred to the QEH. The outcome of this planning will be shared with affected teams and more broadly this week. We recognize any change will require staffing support and additional resources to both PCH and QEH sites. We are working with union partners on this effort.


There are shortages in respiratory therapy staffing that are challenging our team’s ability to provide 24/7 onsite coverage at PCH. 

Several actions are being taken to retain staff at PCH including working with local community-based RTs to provide coverage, hiring new staff, and working with existing staff to cover shifts.  

The full details about RT coverage remain a critical factor that we are working to confirm ASAP. We will share this as soon as we know.

Health PEI continues to work very hard on bringing staff to the PCH including increasing funded positions in medical specialties, RTs, and PSWs. 

There have been several recent applications for Internal Medicine physician positions at PCH. Nurses at both QEH and PCH have successfully completed a four-month critical care course. We know there is much more to do.

More communication will be provided as plans are finalized. Please expect frequent updates from local leaders and the executive team. 

I want to sincerely thank everyone who is working hard on this issue to mitigate any risks or impacts and to provide the best care possible. 



Please send questions, comments, or submissions for these notes to, subject line “CEO Notes”.

Last Updated