Members of the Sylvan Lake and Area Urgent Care committee were presented with a cheque for $12

Ambulatory Care Committee new name for urgent care initiative

“We’ve been going with urgent care but it’s apparent the province is not going to build urgent care.” Susan Samson

There’s a new name for Sylvan Lake area’s urgent care initiative, but the goals of the committee, which has been working for three years, have not changed.

Susan Samson, chair of the committee, used a cheque presentation last Wednesday to update the group’s largest contributor about what’s happening.

She and members of her committee attended a Spirit of Sylvan Yuletide Festival and Market meeting and accepted a cheque for $12,547, proceeds from the second annual festival last November.

“We’ve been going with urgent care,” she said, “but it’s apparent the province is not going to build urgent care”.

As a result they’ve changed their name to Ambulatory Care Committee, Sylvan Lake Area. “The name was changed to fit the model available to us under Family Care Centres,” Samson said.

Last month, the Alberta government set aside $45 million in funding for Family Care Centres that could be used for an ambulatory care clinic. Sylvan Lake was identified as one of nine in Alberta to move to the next stage of the Family Care Centre proposal process.

With the name change, Samson assured their goals haven’t changed. They’re for a facility which provides service seven days a week for extended hours (7 a.m. to 10 p.m.); medical attention for non-life threatening injuries, health services provided by doctors, nurses and other appropriate health professionals, examination and observation spaces and convenient access to lab and diagnostic imaging.

“There are lots of options where the site may end up being,” said Samson. “We’re going into the community to talk to core groups — physicians, special interest groups — to ask what’s missing. Once we figure out that it will determine space.”

The committee has engaged JLT Management to consult and help them through the process. “We expect to have a business plan on the desk of the minister (of health) by mid-September. In a perfect world I would suggest we could have something happening in the summer of 2015,” said Samson

The business case will identify a location, space required, services provided and operational costs for an ambulatory care clinic.

Paperwork to form a non-profit corporation is nearly complete and will be filed within the next few days.

With the most recent donation, the committee now has slightly over $45,000 from major donations by groups such as the Yuletide Festival and businesses like Tim Hortons, as well as donations from individuals around the community and region. The money is being held in trust and will be spent to augment medical equipment required to provide extra or enhanced services one a new facility is in place.


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