New health centre open

By Geoff Lee

January 19, 2016 12:38 PM

Jessica Littlewood, MLA Fort Saskatchewan/Vegreville Alta. joins Saskatchewan Minister of Rural Health Greg Ottentbreit and other officials to cut the ribbon to officially open the new Prairie North Health Centre last Tuesday.

A doctor for everyone in Lloydminster and area.
That’s the concept and potential reality behind the creation of the Prairie North Health Centre in the Prairie North Plaza.
The centre is home to a team of health providers including seven physicians that officially opened last Tuesday after operating since last March.
“What it means to patient care is it’s more of a team approach,” said Vikki Smart, vice-president of primary health services at PNHR in North Battleford.
The centre provides multidisciplinary, integrated primary health services to Lloydminster and area residents, and visiting physician services to Onion Lake Cree Nation.
The medical staff includes a primary care RN who helps with a number of different things from sexual health issues to complex health issues.
There is also a primary health care counsellor who provides services for mild to moderate mental health issues from early depression to grief.
“The other linkages at the centre would include chronic disease nurse educators, dietitians — people who are skilled with helping people to live with their chronic conditions,” said Smart.
The Strides to Better Health program is also run out of the new facility.
Prairie North Health Centre is one of eight Saskatchewan sites funded by the Ministry of Health that has introduced innovative approaches to the delivery of primary health care.
Rural and Remote Health Minister Greg Ottenbreit joined health care providers and staff, residents, local dignitaries and representatives from Lloydminster Region Health Foundation, Prairie North Health Region, Alberta Health Services and the Alberta government for the ribbon cutting.
“The primary health care centre will assist our residents in providing information about how and where to access primary health care and how to gain timely access including after hours care,” said Lloydminster Mayor Rob Saunders, who noted the centre provides people with walk-in ability to see a physician.
“It’s within an initiative to try and reduce the amount of walk-ins to the emergency ward in the Lloydminster hospital.”
The development of the $2.8 million centre arises from a joint funding partnership between PNHR, Lloydminster Region Health Foundation the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health and the Government of Alberta.
On behalf of the city Saunders thanked all of the project partners for making health care more accessible for residents.
“Everyone in Lloydminster should be attached to a doctor or at least have access to a doctor on a regular basis,” he said.
The centre provides regular clinic and after-hour walk-in services Monday through Friday, and walk-in services on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“We are assessing the numbers and if we need to we will expand that,” said Smart.

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