Central Alberta health care facilities experiencing temporary bed and space reductions

At the Rocky Mountain House Health Centre, acute care is seeing a temporary shortage of staff due to illness, leave, vacation, and vacancies. According to AHS, there is currently a bed reduction of 5 out of 31 acute care beds, leaving 84 per cent of those beds in operation.

AHS says the current situation in Rocky Mountain House began on Dec. 10, 2021, with an anticipated end date of Sept. 30, 2022.

At the Myron Thompson Health Center in Sundre, the facility currently has no obstetrical services on site due to a temporary physician shortage from illness, leave, vacation, and vacancies. AHS notes, however, only five deliveries there since 2020.

According to AHS, the current circumstances in Sundre began on April 6, 2020, with an anticipated end date of Aug. 29, 2022.

At Three Hills Health Centre, there are also no obstetrical services currently available on site due to a temporary staff shortage from vacations, vacancies, and illness.

As for acute care services at the facility, AHS acknowledges a current space reduction of 7 out of 21 beds due to a temporary staff shortage from vacations, vacancies, and illness, leaving 66 per cent of acute care beds in operation.

Current circumstances in Three Hills began on July 1, 2022, with an anticipated end date of Aug. 26, 2022.

According to Alberta Health Services, the other communities currently impacted are:

  • high level,
  • Fort Vermillion,
  • peace river,
  • fairview,
  • spirit river,
  • beaver lodge,
  • mclennan,
  • high prairie,
  • slave lake,
  • wabasca,
  • Swan Hills,
  • Lac La Biche,
  • boyle,
  • cold lake,
  • whitecourt,
  • st paul,
  • Two Hills,
  • Fort Saskatchewan,
  • Drayton Valley,
  • wainwright,
  • hardy,
  • Hanna,
  • drum lighter,
  • Airdrie,
  • Calgary,
  • Bassano.

“Albertans deserve a public health care system they can rely on,” said Alberta NDP Labor Critic Christina Gray, on Wednesday. “But after the UCP’s severe mismanagement of the COVID-19 pandemic, their ongoing push to privatize services, and their sustained attacks on frontline health care workers, access to health care for Albertans is more compromised than ever before.”

AHS says the organization makes every effort to secure staff and physician coverage before taking steps to reduce the number of beds and/or care spaces in any of their facilities, saying temporary reductions are only done as a last resort.

“Temporary reductions occur due to staff and physician vacations, scheduled upgrades and construction projects in order to enhance patient and family experiences. AHS plans and prepares for bed reductions to minimize impact on patients, staff, and physicians,” notes the AHS website.

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