New continuing care centre to open next month

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May 26, 2015 8:15 AM

Jaime Polmateer Photo Tours of the new Lloydminster Continuing Care Centre were offered to the public on May 21. Lori Gillespie, left, facility operations manager and Brenda Servold, right, palliative care co-ordinator show Diane Popoff around the facility. - Jaime Polmateer

Alberta Health Services and Prairie North Health Region (PNHR) gave tours of the new Lloydminster Continuing Care Centre on May 21, located at 7402-29 St., which is slated to open in June.

“It just feels really wonderful. It’s been a long time in the planning and we’re really happy,” said Joan Zimmer, director of continuing care services at PNHR. “We think it’s a beautiful facility and it’s just nice to see it finally coming. We’ve promised this for so long and now we can actually provide the space that we’ve talked about.”

Zimmer says ground was broken on the project about three and a half years ago, but saw many delays due to labour shortages. Now that the centre is complete, Lloydminster has five more long-term care beds and will be offering more programs for citizens in need.

In September, they will begin with an adult day program, which will be open for up to 10 people each week from Monday to Friday. That will help seniors with disabilities remain at home for longer by providing a break for their caregivers.

“(Caregivers) can make their appointments or go for a cup of coffee and know that the people are being well cared for,” Zimmer said. “It also means for the person with the impairments that they get some socialization because they don’t get out of the house that often, so here they’ll have some recreation and they’ll probably meet some old friends they didn’t know were around.”

The new centre will also give more space for residents so they won’t have to share rooms and bathrooms and will have access to a better nurse call system. Zimmer says the staff will also be consistent so residents will get to have a more familiar relationship with those working with them.

The majority of residents will be coming from the Dr. Cooke Extended Care Centre, relieving population stress at that facility. But even after taking in Dr. Cooke residents, the new centre will still maintain a bit of a wait list.

“But it will reduce our wait list by five for sure, which is always a good sign,” said Zimmer.

See “Extended care,” Page 11

“It will probably mean we won’t have as many people waiting in acute care for placement or it will mean people won’t be going into acute care because we can meet their needs with our adult day program and our home first program.”

The new centre will be providing many types of care like good physical care, care for those with dementia, and help for people with acquired brain injury that can’t live in the community anymore.

“We also have a very good therapies program and they either maintain the function or try to enhance the functioning of the people living here. We will have a very good intensive recreation program and we will have access to a social worker.”

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