Geriatric Emergency Management

Geriatric Emergency Management (GEM) is a program that provides specialty frailty focused nursing services in our Emergency Department. This program is provided in partnership with Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital and the Couchiching Ontario Health Team.


Geriatric Emergency Management Team

GEM nurses assess frail, at risk seniors and help connect them to appropriate resources in the community.

GEM nurses can assist in identifying and managing:

  • Falls and mobility
  • Cognitive status
  • Nutrition
  • Elimination (bladder or bowel control)
  • Mental Health
  • Safety
  • Functional Status
  • Self-care

GEM nurses are also able to support staff with education and training.

The ED staff may have asked the GEM nurse to see you if you have had:

  • Any recent change in your health, memory, or ability to manage day-to-day activities at home
  • Any concerns about your physical safety and your overall well-being
  • Any concerns with your activities of daily living
  • Frequent visits to the Emergency Department

To see a GEM nurse, you must:

  • Be 65 years or older (younger at discretion of the team), and
  • Be living in your own house (including assisted living, supportive housing, or a retirement home)
  • Have a referral from ED staff
  • After Hours referrals will receive phone call follow up

GEM Nurse Assessment

Prior to the assessment starting, the GEM nurse will ask for your consent to complete assessment. If you agree, the
nurse may also speak with your family/caregivers to help with the assessment.

During the assessment, the GEM nurse will ask about your physical and mental health, and your ability to manage at home.

We may also ask other team members to assist in the assessments such as physiotherapists or occupational therapists.

Following your assessment, the GEM nurse can help you create a plan to follow after you leave the Emergency Department.

The plan may include:

  • A letter to your family doctor or other health care professional
  • A referral to Home and Community Care Services
  • A referral to other community senior services

Community Partners

To support our senior population, OSMH partners with the local community health agencies to provide outpatient senior services.

Some of these service partners include:

  • Helping Hands
  • Alzheimer’s Society
  • Home and Community Care
  • Couchiching Family Health Team (requires referral for select programs)
  • Couchiching Ontario Health Team
  • North Simcoe Muskoka Specialized Geriatric Services (requires referral for geriatric medicine, mental health
    teams, exercise class)
  • VON SMART class
  • Community Paramedicine (referral required)