I read Mr. Dressler’s letter on urgent care last week and I am concerned with some misleading facts. I am sure if the editor checked with EMS services that their ideal response time is three minutes. I would ask the editor to check the average time. I am sure it can be much longer.
I would also like to recognize that Mr. Dressler was extremely lucky to have such a wonderful experience in Emergency at Red Deer. I am sure some readers can tell you that is not the usual scenario. My biggest concern is that some Sylvan Lake residents (not all) seem to want to settle for less from the provincial government.
During the early 1990s, it took a LOT of hard lobbying to simply get our high school updated. Previous to that effort, we were not in any five year plans, insulation (which was hay) was falling out of ceiling tiles and there were numerous documented issues in air quality affecting students. Now, I am sure with the growth in this community, we need a new and larger high school.
While the school is a separate issue, it’s reflective of the process that is sometimes required to get a response on an important issue from the provincial government.
To ask and expect medical coverage 24/7 or least extended hours in evenings is not unreasonable. Smaller communities in this province have even more. Didsbury has a hospital with 24/7 emergency care, extended care, a lodge and now under P3 partnership, will be getting supportive living as well. Their population is half of Sylvan Lake and Olds has a hospital only 11 km. away.
I don’t think it is unreasonable that a community of our size to ask for Urgent Care. We need to be able to respond to non-life-threatening medical conditions and it could take some of burden off the existing Emergency in Red Deer. Cochrane, Okotoks, and Airdrie all have urgent care.
By the way, Mr. Dressler, your visit to the Emergency instead of an Urgent Care facility cost me more as a taxpayer. In addition, that air ambulance you talked about has to come from a base in Calgary or Edmonton which does not happening in under 30 minutes. If we had Urgent Care, the physician in Urgent Care would be able to stabilize a patient, do X-Rays and blood work while waiting for STARS. This would be a win-win scenario for everyone.
I ask Sylvan Lake citizens, to STOP expecting less than the norm and start demanding services that everyone else in the province takes for granted.
Your tax dollars are paying for 24/7 hour Emergency care in Didsbury but not here Mr. Dressler.
Please understand that the budget for an Urgent Care center comes from AHS (Alberta Health Services) — our provincial tax dollars, not the Town of Sylvan Lake budget.
A concerned taxpayer.