December 11th, 2018

Brooks health priorities being matched by AHS

By Letter to the Editor on December 5, 2018.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) is grateful for its partnership with the Brooks and District Health Foundation. The foundation has shown outstanding commitment to enhancing patient care in Brooks.

Since the foundation’s fundraising campaign for a hemodialysis unit began, the health-care needs of the community have changed. As the organization responsible for health-care services in the province, we must ensure our healthcare priorities match a community’s needs.

In 2014, the Brooks and District Health Foundation and the Southern Alberta Renal Program (SARP) considered expanding the southern Alberta hemodialysis program into the community of Brooks. The criteria for developing a hemodialysis unit requires a minimum of six patients, and the discussion of expanding the program to Brooks was based on the need at that time.

Current numbers show there is little patient need for a hemodialysis unit. Our decision to not move ahead with the proposed project was not made hastily or easily, and is based on patient trends over the last four years.

We understand that significant efforts have gone into fundraising for a new dialysis unit. We thank the foundation and local residents for this, and appreciate their support and hard work, and all of the volunteers, donors and community partners who contributed to this project.

AHS will work with the foundation to identify other ways we can ensure renal patients get their dialysis treatments as close to home as possible.

We also appreciate that the foundation and its donors want to see their philanthropic dollars enhance care and promote excellence in their community’s health centre. We are committed to working closely with the foundation to ensure the funds raised through their extraordinary efforts are spent on the community’s greatest health-care needs.

Katherine Chubbs

Chief Zone Officer, South Zone

Dr. Jack Regehr

Zone Medical Director, South Zone

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