A Day in the Life of a Physician in the Emergency Department
Ever since I was a child, I have always been interested in helping people from different walks of life. I went on to become a doctor because I saw medicine as a valuable profession that serves a basic human need for everyone, across cultures and no matter their situation.
After practicing family medicine, I decided to specialize in the Emergency Department. I liked the idea of problem solving in an acute team environment where investigation is required to figure out if you are dealing with a minor health problem or something major.
My name is Dr. Eliza Chan; I am the Co-Department Head for Richmond Hospital’s emergency department and I have been an emergency physician for 17 years. I have been working at Richmond Hospital since 2018, where I love getting to know people from the community and experiencing the different cultures and needs of our patients. As a bilingual person who is passionate about diversity, equity, and inclusion, I feel I have something to contribute to this wonderful community.
I am also proud to work with a team of health professionals who provide the best care for our patients even when they’re at their most vulnerable. That’s incredibly meaningful. And the fact is, we couldn’t do that without your support, because your donations help all of our health care teams provide timely and efficient care during these challenging times.
Every dollar you give allows health care teams at Richmond Hospital to continue delivering tireless care for you and your loved ones despite the extra strains of the pandemic. That’s why I hope you will consider a generous donation towards the gift of health for your family, friends, and neighbours.
At Richmond Hospital, we have close to 40 Emergency Department (ED) physicians who work varied shifts. We take turns filling different roles within the department—from Acute, where patients may need resuscitation, to Intake, where patients are quite sick, to Fast Track, where we take care of simpler problems like cuts or broken bones.
Every day in the ED is different. Every day is a challenge. With an aging population in Richmond, patient visits to the ED are high. Early days of the pandemic saw patients avoiding the ED, but we are now back to pre-COVID numbers. The combination of the pandemic and other life challenges has created a new ED reality for staff and patients. Patients are arriving in poor condition with longer stays required to recover, along with a significant rise in mental health and drug addiction visits. These circumstances are then further exacerbated by staffing shortages due to pandemic related burnout.
However, even with the current challenges, I can’t begin to tell you how gratifying my job is. Working at a community hospital like ours, you develop a relationship with your colleagues, your patients, and their families.
At Richmond Hospital, we want to see all of our patients live their healthiest lives, and your help makes that possible. Thank you for giving the gift of health and supporting the health of your community.
Dr. Eliza Chan
P.S. Now is the time to show your support for your community heroes who are committed to caring for you and your loved ones!