December 10, 2023

Chilly Lake city council desires to get a neighborhood clinical clinic in hopes that it will assistance entice a lot more doctors to occur to a neighborhood where by 40 for every cent of people deficiency accessibility to a household doctor.

The town ideas to shell out $1.85 million to obtain the Glacier Gate Health-related Clinic from two medical professionals who are leaving Cold Lake.

A five-person board of administrators would run the clinic as a for-financial gain municipally managed company or MCC, at arm’s-duration from the city. The making also houses a pharmacy. 

“The time for remaining on the sidelines when furnishing significant taxpayer funding in the hopes of resolving these challenges in the nearby wellness-treatment method is more than,” the draft small business prepare states.

“Relatively than continue being a passive observer and a source of recruitment funding, the Town of Chilly Lake is now on the lookout to create a robust foothold in the active recruitment of medical professionals so that it can influence alter for the group that will satisfy its wellness-care requirements.”

Mayor Craig Copeland stated the city would like to expand the variety of medical professionals, not just replace individuals who retire or go absent.

“What council’s vision right here was, let us get in listed here, let us get a foot in the doorway, let’s learn how to operate a clinic,” Copeland claimed. 

A man in business attire smiles at the camera.
Craig Copeland is the mayor of Chilly Lake. (City of Cold Lake)

“The concept is to get a several a lot more doctors in the neighborhood to get the strain off our present health professionals mainly because we experience that they are just overtaxed.”

A municipal census done in 2022 observed that 40 per cent of Cold Lake inhabitants don’t have accessibility to a family members doctor and with another 8 per cent looking at a physician outdoors the group. About 46 per cent of respondents explained they wait around about 3 weeks to get an appointment.

Considering that he to start with grew to become mayor in 2007, Copeland stated the selection of medical doctors in Chilly Lake has stayed the very same although the populace has elevated. He claimed new doctors are recruited only to replace people who have departed. 

The city desires to convey in added practitioners who can take new people. 

Alberta Wellbeing Companies is conscious of and supports the Cold Lake proposal, a spokesperson said.

Municipally controlled businesses are ordinarily utility organizations, this sort of as ENMAX in Calgary and Aquatera, which is based in the Grande Prairie region. Municipal Affairs isn’t really informed of yet another municipality that has made use of the MCC design for a well being-treatment facility.

Retaining medical professionals

Dr. Samantha Myhr, president of the rural medicine part of the Alberta Healthcare Association, has appeared at the Chilly Lake proposal. 

Myhr says the city’s proposal appears great on paper, nevertheless she cautions she has not spoken to doctors in Cold Lake.

The means to practise in a clinic that supplies area, help staff and products would be attractive to opportunity recruits, she added.

Myhr said she also appreciates that a local community is recognizing that preserving and supporting the existing doctors by lightening their workloads is significant. She explained continuity of treatment is significant to patients, and supplies another incentive to draw medical professionals to the group. 

“They are happier,” Myhr said of the existing physicians. 

“They’re heading to be a lot more ready to educate new learners and those people learners are likely to see a office that allows them to have a little bit of a balance, the place persons are content.

“And so it is a self-perpetuating favourable cycle.”

Cold Lake metropolis council held a general public hearing on the proposal final month as required below municipal regulation. The council is anticipated to pass a resolution Tuesday night, which will then be despatched to Municipal Affairs Minister Rebecca Schulz. The minister is required to be notified inside of 60 times. 

Copeland hopes to have the clinic functioning below the new model by April 1. The four doctors who continue being at the clinic and the latest staff members are envisioned to keep on in their roles following the changeover.

The the vast majority of the city’s other relatives drugs clinics are found on the second flooring of the Chilly Lake Healthcare Centre, which offers them no room to develop. 

If the MCC fills up space in the initial clinic, Copeland stated it could seem at opening a location in a different portion of the town. 


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