ST. PAUL - Patients who use the hemodialysis unit at the St. Therese-St. Paul Healthcare Centre will have access to expanded hours of operation, according to Alberta Health Services (AHS).
Last Friday, AHS announced that hemodialysis units in St. Paul and at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre in Fort McMurray would both be expanding hours of operation, “bringing care closer to home for six dialysis patients in each community.”
“We’re excited to be able to expand our care at these facilities,” said Nicole Veronovici, Executive Director for Alberta Kidney Care North, in a written announcement from AHS. “Having closer access to dialysis treatment gives people back time they would have spent travelling that they can use to rest, to work and to enjoy the things that matter to them.”
The expanded hours took effect on Jan. 2, and according to AHS there is now “sufficient dialysis capacity in both communities to serve all local patients.”
The move to increase services was based on “several factors,” according to AHS, with “patient need” being the top priority.
The number of patients on the waitlist was also part of the decision, along with projected future needs.
“The availability of space, community support for increased dialysis spots, and the ability to secure trained staff are also key considerations,” according to AHS.
“Dialysis treatments take several hours each and happen a few times each week,” explains Amie Sawchuk, unit manager for the St. Paul and Fort McMurray locations.
“Patients love the convenience of being closer to home. Some also benefit from the supportive connections they form with the people who share their regular treatment times,” added Sawchuk.