Cold Lake buying medical clinic in hopes of attracting doctors

Cold Lake council needs to obtain a community medical clinic in hopes that it will assistance entice more medical doctors to appear to a neighborhood exactly where 40 for each cent of inhabitants lack obtain to a loved ones health practitioner.

The metropolis strategies to shell out $1.85 million to buy the Glacier Gate Medical Clinic from two doctors who are leaving Chilly Lake.

A five-individual board of directors would operate the clinic as a for-earnings municipally managed corporation or MCC, at arms-size from the city. The making also residences a pharmacy. 

“The time for remaining on the sidelines while supplying sizeable taxpayer funding in the hopes of resolving these problems in the area wellness-treatment method is over,” the draft company system states.

“Relatively than stay a passive observer and a supply of recruitment funding, the Metropolis of Chilly Lake is now hunting to build a strong foothold in the active recruitment of doctors so that it can impact improve for the community that will meet up with its overall health-treatment desires.”

Chilly Lake Mayor Craig Copeland stated the city needs to expand the variety of doctors, not just switch all those who retire or go away.

“What council’s vision right here was, let’s get in listed here, let’s get a foot in the door, let’s find out how to operate a clinic,” Copeland said. 

portrait of Cold Lake Mayor Craig Copeland
Craig Copeland is the mayor of Cold Lake. (Metropolis of Cold Lake )

“The strategy is to get a couple of much more medical practitioners in the local community to get the force off our existing physicians for the reason that we feel that they are just overtaxed.”

A municipal census executed in 2022 located that 40 for every cent of Chilly Lake citizens never have entry to a loved ones medical doctor and with another 8 for every cent seeing a physician exterior the group. About 46 per cent of respondents claimed they wait around a few months to get an appointment. 

Since he initially turned mayor in 2007, Copeland claimed the quantity of medical practitioners in Cold Lake has stayed the very same when the inhabitants has enhanced. He stated new medical professionals are recruited only to swap people who have departed. 

The town needs to provide in supplemental practitioners who can accept new clients. 

Alberta Overall health Solutions is knowledgeable of and supports the Cold Lake proposal, a spokesperson claimed. 

Municipally managed companies are commonly utility businesses such as ENMAX in Calgary and Aquatera which is primarily based in the Grande Prairie location. Municipal Affairs is not informed of a different municipality that has used the MCC product for a overall health-care facility.

Retaining medical professionals

Dr. Samantha Myhr, president of the rural medicine portion of the Alberta Healthcare Affiliation, has seemed at the Chilly Lake proposal. 

Myhr says the city’s proposal looks good on paper, even though she cautions she has not spoken to medical professionals in Chilly Lake.

The capability to exercise in a clinic that materials place, assist staff members and machines would be attractive to likely recruits, she additional. 

Myhr said she also appreciates that a neighborhood is recognizing that holding and supporting the existing physicians by lightening their workloads is vital. She stated continuity of care is crucial to clients, and provides a further incentive to draw physicians to the group. 

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

“They are likely to be far more keen to train new learners and those people learners are going to see a office that permits them to have a little bit of a stability, the place people today are joyful.

“And so it can be a self-perpetuating good cycle.”

Chilly Lake metropolis council held a public listening to on the proposal last month as required under municipal law. The council is expected to go a resolution Tuesday night time, which will then be despatched to Municipal Affairs Minister Rebecca Schulz. The minister is needed to be notified inside of 60 days. 

Copeland hopes to have the clinic operating beneath the new design by April 1. The 4 medical professionals who continue being at the clinic and the current employees are expected to continue on in their roles soon after the changeover.

The vast majority of the city’s other spouse and children drugs clinics are situated on the second ground of the Chilly Lake Healthcare Centre, which offers them no home to increase. 

If the MCC fills up space in the very first clinic, Copeland reported it could search at opening a area in a different part of the metropolis.