Proposed family care clinics won’t be scrapped

Those lobbying for better health care in Sylvan Lake reacted with relief to news that proposed family care clinics will not be abandoned. New Health Minister Stephen Mandel confirmed on Tuesday that nine family care clinics working their way through the approval process will not be scrapped.

Those lobbying for better health care in Sylvan Lake reacted with relief to news that proposed family care clinics will not be abandoned.

New Health Minister Stephen Mandel confirmed on Tuesday that nine family care clinics working their way through the approval process will not be scrapped.

“There’s nine of them in the queue, and we’re going to look at those and see how to make them work,” said Mandel, who was in Olds to unveil the province’s new review of health care in rural and under-serviced areas.

Concerns were raised that the clinics — up to 140 in all — proposed by former premier Alison Redford would be abandoned as the province seeks to modernize health care.

Sylvan Lake Mayor Sean McIntyre was encouraged that the province will honour its commitment to the nine proposed clinics. Three others already operating will also continue.

“That’s really what’s got us encouraged right now,” said McIntyre, who watched Mandel’s news conference and a question-and-answer session online.

“Our global approach to developing and improving health-care services to Sylvan Lake and area appears to be right in line with what Premier (Jim) Prentice and his government are proposing.”

Sylvan Lake hopes to take advantage of the family care clinic initiative to create a new health care centre offering seven-day-a-week treatment for non-life-threatening injuries and ailments, with extended hours from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. It would include lab and diagnostic imaging (X-ray) services, observation beds and access to preventive treatment such as mental health services.

McIntyre said the area including Sylvan Lake, Bentley, Eckville, five summer villages and surrounding rural areas is 20,000 strong and needs better health care access.

“Despite the change in government, that need hasn’t changed.”

An 18-person volunteer committee has been working for years on the local care clinic project.

A business plan is nearing completion and is expected to be submitted to Alberta Health soon.

McIntyre said his council wants a face-to-face meeting with the premier and health minister to bring them up to speed on local health care efforts.

Wildrose Innisfail-Sylvan Lake MLA Kerry Towle said the nine groups seeking family care clinics have put a lot of time and money into their proposals and business plans.

Those initiatives are an example of local decision making, she said.

“They came up with the solutions. The doctors have managed their own time to provide a solution and they’re being virtually ignored,” she said.

“We hope that Mr. Mandel will see that with those nine (family care clinics), he’ll continue to go forward and give them an answer very, very soon.”

Just Posted

‘Do Indians have property rights?’ Former Alberta chief’s land dispute in court

STANDOFF, Alta. — A dispute between two families over land on Canada’s… Continue reading

Missing female found near Sundre

Local rancher finds missing female

Buyers turn to letters to snag homes in Canada’s hot real estate markets

TORONTO — Monica Martins and her husband had been looking for a… Continue reading

Spin yarn unspun: Research upends theory that Vikings taught Inuit fibre skills

New research is upending old assumptions about what the ancestors of today’s… Continue reading

Woman sues fertility clinic, says lawsuit highlights need for better regulation

TORONTO — A lawsuit filed by a Toronto woman against a fertility… Continue reading

WATCH: Gazebo groundbreaking in Waskasoo

Fifty per cent of the $100,000 project is funded by a provincial government grant

Second World War Two-era B-29 Superfortress named ‘Fifi’ lands for first-ever Canadian tour

MONTREAL — A rare Second World War-era bomber named “Fifi” has touched… Continue reading

Magnus Cort Nielsen wins Stage 15 of Tour de France

CARCASSONNE, France — Magnus Cort Nielsen of Denmark sprinted away from two… Continue reading

Ryan Reynolds teases ‘Deadpool 2’ extended cut at Comic-Con

SAN DIEGO — Ryan Reynolds has made a triumphant return to San… Continue reading

‘Wonder Woman,’ ‘Aquaman’ and ‘Shazam!” thrill Comic-Con

SAN DIEGO — Warner Bros. brought out all the stops Saturday at… Continue reading

All shell, no shock: Lobster prices strong, season picks up

PORTLAND, Maine — New England’s lobster industry faces big new challenges in… Continue reading

Woman killed in collision near Olds

A woman is dead after a collision west of Olds Saturday afternoon.… Continue reading

Evacuation numbers remain at nearly 1,000 as B.C. wildfires rage on

SUMMERLAND, B.C. — Officials in British Columbia’s Okanagan region hope that fire… Continue reading

Survivors recount deadly Missouri duck boat sinking

BRANSON, Mo. — “Grab the baby!” Those were the last words Tia… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month