Sunday, February 26, 2017

Alberta Health Services provided a emailed statement saying it is currently involved in long-range planning for the central region to determine what health services will be needed in the next 15 years. “Our central zone leaders recently met with the Red Deer physician group and shared an update on the planning activities,” the statement said.------Damian Reese Honestly...if primary care was better, many of these hospitals and ER issues would be dramatically improved-----Julie Ali · University of Alberta I think prevention is the way to go. For example, continuing care facilities send patients to the emergency and this sort of interfacility transfer could be diminished with on the spot review of health needs. I believe this is being attempted by AHS in Edmonton. If we decrease transfers from continuing care to the emergency wards of our hospitals this is a major cost savings. Another way to prevent increased acute care use is to provide sufficient care. For example ,in 2013 my sister was sent out of ICU at the Grey Nuns Hospital too early and then had to be transferred to the UAH and then the RAH ICU. This was not a good move on the part of the ICU doctors at the Grey Nuns Hospital. A more productive approach would have been to keep her in ICU and not have subjected her to more hospitalization at other acute care facilities. Sometimes hospitals are more interested in bed pressure than in ensuring that there is sufficient time to recuperate. It's all about planning and it feels sometimes in Alberta there is no planning.---


I still have not figured out the decision making tree at AHS that can request a hospital for Edson but not for Airdrie. I can't understand why the Red Deer Hospital that has been under stress for years is also not getting increased infrastructure support. It's all very mysterious.
Someone in government should tell us how projects rise to the top of the heap at AHS and how then the folks at Alberta Health decide who gets the plums and who gets the stones.


Oct 27, 2012

New Edson Healthcare Centre means improved access to health care services and more continuing care spaces

21,878 square metre complex will have 24 acute care beds, 76 continuing care beds

Improved access to emergency services, outpatient care and renal dialysis will be available to Edson and area residents as a result of the Alberta government’s approval of plans for the new Edson Healthcare Centre.
The facility will feature 24 acute care beds and 76 continuing care beds, which is an addition of 26 continuing care beds to existing capacity in the community. Almost 6,500 square metres has been added to the plan for the new healthcare centre, for a total of 21,878 square metres.
“Finalizing the plans for the new healthcare centre is exciting news for Edson and area residents,” said Fred Horne, Minister of Health. “Details on the services that will be provided were developed after extensive consultation with area health professionals. The new facility reflects local priorities - including more continuing care spaces and the addition of a renal dialysis program. We need to make the health system fit Albertans, instead of fitting people into the system.”
The new budget for the project is $186 million, up from the original $108 million. Funding will come from the existing provincial budget. The increase reflects design improvements related to recent changes in guidelines and standards, the enhanced scope of services that will be available at the new facility, and cost escalation.  


“I am pleased that we have the funding in place and we now know what is needed to make this hospital work for the community,” said Wayne Drysdale, Infrastructure Minister. “I am confident that we can stay on schedule and complete construction of this important project in 2015.”
Finalized details include project scope, construction schedule and an enhanced budget. The new Edson Healthcare Centre will include:
  • an emergency department;
  • acute care;
  • outpatient services;
  • renal dialysis unit;
  • surgical services;
  • primary health care services;
  • diagnostic imaging and laboratory services;
  • physician clinic space; and
  • continuing care.
The Edson Healthcare Centre is expected to open to the public in the winter of 2015. As more detailed work is undertaken to plan the clinical commissioning of the facility, opening dates may be adjusted to ensure the safety of staff and patients.
“The new Edson Healthcare Centre will improve access to leading edge health care for Albertans in the area,” said Stephen Lockwood, Chair, Alberta Health Services Board. “Consolidating and expanding programs and services in one location will also benefit our patients, their families, and the entire community.

Backgrounder

Edson Healthcare Centre quick facts

  • The new Edson Healthcare Centre will include a wide range of health services including acute care, continuing care, primary health care and community health programs. The 21,878 square metre project will replace the existing healthcare centre and continuing care facility.
  • By adding approximately 6,500 square metres to the original plan, the healthcare centre will support integrated, accessible patient and family-centered care.
  • The new healthcare centre will feature 24 acute care beds.
  • In order for more seniors to remain in or near their own communities, 26 more continuing care spaces have been added to the project for a total of 76.
  • The facility will feature a six-station renal dialysis unit and a new medical device reprocessing unit to sterilize operating room equipment.
  • In addition to clinic space inside the new facility, physician clinic space will also be located adjacent to the healthcare centre and connected through pedway access.
  • The new healthcare centre will meet current standards for hospital facilities and infection control that call for single patient rooms with their own bathrooms and sinks and larger, separated areas to sterilize equipment.
-30-
Media inquiries may be directed to:
Jeannie Smith
Press Secretary
Minister of Infrastructure
780-422-6267
780-554-5030 (cell)
John Muir
Communications
Alberta Health
780-422-7951
587-983-7127 (cell)

Overtaxed Red Deer hospital urgently needs expansion, doctors say

KEITH GEREIN, EDMONTON JOURNAL  02.26.2017
Overtaxed Red Deer hospital urgently needs expansion, doctors say
Red Deer Regional Hospital is now the major referral site for a population of at least 350,000, helping to make it the fourth or fifth busiest hospital in the province.
/ EDMONTON JOURNAL
A group of Red Deer doctors is demanding provincial health leaders move ahead with a major expansion of the city’s hospital, a facility they say is plagued by persistent overcrowding and a lack of specialty programs.
Surgery delays, an overtaxed emergency department and the absence of a cardiac catheterization lab are among a long list of deficiencies putting the health of central Albertans at risk, say the physicians, who are taking their fight public.
“This is something that has been in the making really for years, because we’ve always felt central Alberta wasn’t getting its fair share when it came to health care infrastructure and programs,” said Dr. Kym Jim, an internal medicine specialist. “We have decided the public needs to know about the issues we are facing.”
Jim said a dozen or more doctors are organizing a “state of the hospital” address on Tuesday afternoon in Red Deer, where they will make the case the region has failed to receive the investment it deserves.
Compared with some Alberta communities, Red Deer’s health facilities are relatively modern. While the main hospital building opened in 1980, three additions to the site were completed in 2005, followed by the new Central Alberta Cancer Centre in 2013.
Nonetheless, the doctors say facility space and program funding has not kept pace with massive population growth in the region in recent years.
Jim said the Red Deer Regional Hospital is now the major referral site for a population of at least 350,000, helping to make it the fourth or fifth busiest hospital in the province.
An Alberta Health Services report completed in 2015 said the 370-bed hospital had an immediate need for 79 new beds, an expanded emergency department, a handful of new operating rooms and other upgrades to provide proper patient care.
The report noted that surgeries have been frequently postponed due to a lack of available beds to house patients following their procedures.
Jim said there have also been recommendations to establish a cardiac catheterization lab, where tests are done to determine how well a patient’s heart is working.  He said the lack of such a facility in Red Deer means patients have to travel to Calgary or Edmonton, and generally experience worse health outcomes.
Doctors have similar concerns about the absence of dedicated clinics to treat irritable bowel syndrome, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other conditions, he said.
“Why can’t people in central Alberta have access to those programs closer to home?” Jim said. “We can easily deliver them here but we are not given the dollars.”
In both 2014 and 2015, Alberta Health Services recommended a new hospital tower be constructed on the site with an estimated price tag of $750 million, and included the project among its list of top infrastructure priorities.
The tower was then dropped from the list in 2016, placed behind at least 21 other projects. Jim said it was that move that served as the catalyst for the doctors to begin speaking out publicly.
The demand for increased investment in Red Deer’s hospital comes at a time when the cash-strapped NDP government has been inundated with demands for new health infrastructure.
In Edmonton, both the Royal Alexandra and Misericordia hospitals have waited more than a decade for funding to replace overtaxed and crumbling facilities built in the 1960s. Those two projects alone have been estimated to cost up to $7 billion.
Alberta Health Services provided a emailed statement saying it is currently involved in long-range planning for the central region to determine what health services will be needed in the next 15 years.  
“Our central zone leaders recently met with the Red Deer physician group and shared an update on the planning activities,” the statement said.
kgerein@postmedia.com
twitter.com/keithgerein



Julie Ali · 
I have been hearing about the needs of the Red Deer hospital for ages. In Airdrie there is a request for a hospital that won't be built.

I am curioius how infrastructure decisions are made at AHS and Alberta Health.

It is frankly odd to me that we have major investments in places like Edson which has such a small population while Airdrie with a much bigger population gets nothing. Why did AHS propose this facility and yet nothing for Red Deer or Airdrie? Someone in government should explain the decision making tree to the citizens of Alberta.

https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm...
Oct 27, 2012

New Edson Healthcare Centre means improved access to health care services and more continuing care spaces

21,878 square metre complex will have 24 acute care beds, 76 continuing care beds

Improved access to emergency services, outpatient care and renal dialysis will be available to Edson and area residents as a result of the Alberta government’s approval of plans for the new Edson Healthcare Centre.
The facility will feature 24 acute care beds and 76 continuing care beds, which is an addition of 26 continuing care beds to existing capacity in the community.
LikeReply10 mins
Wendy Hjertaas ·
The Red Deer area has been poorly represented by our MLAs for at least the last decade. Our present MLAs are essentially missing in action. Without someone standing up for Central Albertans in AHS the money will always go to hospitals in Edmonton and Calgary. If you have a heart attack in Central Alberta your chance of a good outcome is less than that for a similiar person with the same problem in Calgary. Many patients in Central Alberta need to drive to Edmonton or Calgary to access care that could easily be provided in Red Deer. Providing the services here would be cost effective and reduce the load from over taxed services in the bigger cities. Unless Central Albertans and our MLAs stand up for themselves we will continue to be under served by AHS.
LikeReply121 hrs
Paul Hardy
I think there are many reasons why our MLAs over the past decade or more have not been able articulate our concerns such that it translates into what Central Albertans deserve. Our current MLAs have actually been working very hard advocating for Central Zone, but they need a concerted push by the entire community for our concerns to be heard and acted upon.
LikeReply115 hrs
Michelle Stirling ·
Just think - the >$22 billion being wasted on coal phase-out could have done so much for health care in Alberta. Soon we will be like Ontario - cutting doctors fees and medical services as power prices skyrocket and we end up paying an estimated $900 million a year to subsidize wind and solar for almost no power return. Terrible! People literally SUFFER because of these 'climate policies' which only enrich green crony capitalists.
LikeReply8 hrs
Julie Ali ·
I agree with you that the coal phase out will lead to increased electricity costs in Alberta.There was no reason to do this early coal phase out in my opinion. It is unfortunate that the NDP folks decided on this greenwashing policy but I guess they wanted pipelines approved by the federal government.

The climate change policy isn't very good and the carbon tax is useless. A tax that returns money to most of the taxed citizens is not going to change behaviour. The money left over from the tax will be used by government as it sees fit. In my opinion this tax is basically a greenwashing GST that the NDP folks did not tell us about.

I am curious also how the government of Alberta plans to pay for the costs of government; I mean we can't be running deficits forever.
LikeReply4 mins
Ed Henderson ·
When I was raised we were taught to lend a helping hand to needy folks. Instead of building not so needed Blue Lines and Green lines and Red lines, perhaps Calgary could reach out to Red Deer and see if we can help with their needs in some way.
LikeReply9 hrs
Dave Rose ·
Works at Unknown
Health care and education urgently needs expansion because of all the Muslims moving into the province thanks to Nutley. Too stupid to see the ramifications of her stupid decisions
LikeReply14 hrs
Julie Ali ·
I doubt that the movement of Muslims have anything to do with infrastructure deficits that have been in place since the time of the Klein error.

Health care and education are two of the biggest budget costs for every province. The population has been increasing in Alberta for ages. Some of this increase may be due to Muslim citizens but certainly the increase in population is not entirely Muslim I would imagine.

Islamophobia such as yours is not the reason for the increased expansion requirements of this hospital. I have heard of the need for the expansion of the Red Deer hospital for ages with no response from the GOA. Similar requests for the building of a hospital in Airdrie have not resulted in any hospital construction.
LikeReply15 mins
Damian Reese
Honestly...if primary care was better, many of these hospitals and ER issues would be dramatically improved.
LikeReply22 hrs
Julie Ali ·
I think prevention is the way to go. For example, continuing care facilities send patients to the emergency and this sort of interfacility transfer could be diminished with on the spot review of health needs. I believe this is being attempted by AHS in Edmonton. If we decrease transfers from continuing care to the emergency wards of our hospitals this is a major cost savings.
Another way to prevent increased acute care use is to provide sufficient care. For example ,in 2013 my sister was sent out of ICU at the Grey Nuns Hospital too early and then had to be transferred to the UAH and then the RAH ICU. This was not a good move on the part of the ICU doctors at the Grey Nuns Hospital. A more productive approach would have been to keep her in ICU and not have subjected her to more hospitalization at other acute care facilities. Sometimes hospitals are more interested in bed pressure than in ensuring that there is sufficient time to recuperate.
It's all about planning and it feels sometimes in Alberta there is no planning.
LikeReply10 mins

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