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YNHH explores adding temporary ED annex and finding space for inpatients awaiting beds

Materials for a temporary Emergency Department annex have been delivered to the West Pavilion entrance. Plans are under way for the annex and other measures to help ease ED overcrowding, including the number of patients boarding in the ED while they await an inpatient bed.


Plans continue to evolve for a temporary patient care annex at the York Street Campus that would help Yale New Haven Hospital more effectively and efficiently manage a surge in Emergency Department (ED) patients and care for admitted patients who are awaiting an inpatient bed. 

Ideas being discussed include building the temporary patient care structure on what is now the West Pavilion entrance driveway. The structure would accommodate 35 emergency patients with less-serious illnesses or injuries who will likely be discharged from the ED after treatment. The current YSC ED space would be used for patients with more serious conditions. 

Construction of the temporary annex is expected to take four to six weeks. West Pavilion patients would be directed to the North Pavilion/Smilow Cancer Hospital entrance during construction and the six months the temporary unit is open. 

In addition, the hospital would increase efforts to temporarily move admitted patients who are now boarding in YSC ED hallways to the Saint Raphael Campus ED. 

YNHH’s ED locations – at the York Street and Saint Raphael campuses and Shoreline Medical Center – were experiencing patient volume surges before COVID-19. While there was a lull during the pandemic’s height, the surges have resumed. COVID-19 and flu cases will likely add to the volume this winter. 

“We understand that the changes we’re making, while temporary, might cause some initial disruption for patients, visitors and staff,” said Michael Holmes, executive vice president and chief operating officer. “But with record volume, rising COVID-19 cases and the coming flu season, we must take steps to ensure we can continue providing the safest, highest-quality care in the most appropriate settings. I’ve seen our team work as one hospital to minimize disruption, learn quickly and improve patient care processes to deliver superior clinical outcomes."