328 West Conan Street, Ely, Minnesota 55731

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When Things Go South Up North: EBCH’s Emergency Department Services 

Emergencies are unpredictable. When you’re in the serene wilderness of northern Minnesota, especially the Ely area, the unexpected can be even more daunting. Fortunately, both Ely residents and visitors to this area can find solace in the reliable and responsive emergency services at Ely-Bloomenson Community Hospital (EBCH). 

With a dedicated team led by Greg Jonas, Nursing Services Team Lead, and Colin Yahnke, Chief Nursing Officer (CNO), EBCH’s Emergency Department (ED) — commonly called the emergency room or ER — is equipped to handle emergencies with state-of-the-art technology and a compassionate approach. 

Ready for Anything, Anytime 

“Our community’s health and safety are our top priorities,” said Jonas. “We’re trained to treat or stabilize any emergency condition that may present. Our proximity to the wilderness also means we’re often the first and most critical response point for emergencies.” 

With the next nearest Emergency Department an hour away, the ED at EBCH has become not just a convenience but a necessity for Ely and the surrounding areas.  

“We’re providing high-level emergency services to a community that depends on us being ready at a moment’s notice,” Jonas explained. 

Advanced Care in a Rural Setting 

The technological prowess of EBCH’s Emergency Department is extremely beneficial to the community and nearby areas, as well. 

“We have one of the most advanced CTs, and our diagnostic capabilities are on par with a Level I center,” said Yahnke.  

This means that for anything from a heart attack to a simple earache, the ED is prepared to provide the necessary and most appropriate care…fast. 

Recognizing the importance of the “golden hour” in emergency care – the first 60 minutes after an injury or sudden illness has occurred – Yahnke noted: “We train at the highest level to extend that critical window, ensuring patients can get to a definitive care center right after we’ve stabilized them.” 

Stabilize and Support

Of course, there are instances where patients need to be transferred to a larger hospital for specialized care. EBCH is equipped to send patients to hospitals with a higher level of care using ground (ambulance) transportation or helicopters via the on-site helipad. When needed, EBCH can also transport patients via fixed-wing planes through Ely Airport. 

“Much of our expertise also lies in stabilizing certain conditions like stroke, trauma and cardiac events before arranging for a safe transfer,” shared Jonas. 

Yahnke agreed and shared the importance of moving quickly to provide vital, stabilizing care. 

Community Awareness and Outreach 

“For example, vascular injuries require immediate attention to save both life and limb. We have the capabilities to provide that essential initial care,” he explained. 
Both Jonas and Yahnke believe that, while the local community is aware of the Emergency Department’s presence, there’s always room for increased awareness, especially among tourists to the region.  

“Our emergency services truly enhance Ely as a vacation destination, giving thousands of visitors every summer the confidence that high-quality medical care is available nearby,” Jonas said. 

Emergency Services that Never Sleep 

EBCH’s Emergency Department is more than just a medical facility; it’s a beacon of care for the community and the area’s visitors. The staff’s dedication to providing exceptional emergency services ensures that when things don’t go as planned, there’s always a team ready to help a patient get back to their daily activities or vacation plans. 

The ED operates 24/7, ensuring that no matter when an emergency strikes, the hospital is ready to respond.  

As Jonas pointed out: “The ability to provide high-quality care close to home is what makes EBCH invaluable to this community.” 

We’re Here for You 

Nobody plans a visit to the emergency room, but it’s reassuring to know that if the need arises, EBCH’s emergency services are available around the clock. Whether you’re a local resident or a visitor enjoying the natural beauty of northern Minnesota, trust EBCH to be there for you when you need it most. 

If you or someone you know is facing an emergency, don’t hesitate. Visit EBCH’s Emergency Department at 328 West Conan Street in Ely, Minn.  

Learn more about our services and how we can assist if things go south while you’re up north. 

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