Signed, sealed and delivered
South Peace News
Space for the CT scanner services machine, renal dialysis and cancer treatment will be provided in the new High Prairie Hospital.
Alberta Health and Wellness Minster Dave Hancock confirmed his promise made in the Alberta Legislature in a letter to Peace Country Health Nov. 29, but not released publicly until last week.
“I am pleased to approve making these revisions to the scope of work for the project on the condition that they will be accommodated within the approved construction budget and that there is no commitment to the future timing for introducing these services,” writes Hancock.
The news is not all good, however. Hancock makes no commitment to providing money to run the services.
“My department staff contacted Capital Health and Alberta Cancer Board officials rewarding their support for introducing renal and cancer programs in High Prairie,” writes Hancock. “The Northern Alberta Renal Program is not able to commit to the operation of a satellite renal dialysis unit in High Prairie within any defined time frame. NARP does support making provision for a possible future anal service at the High Prairie facility but has clearly indicated that such a unit could not be operational until sufficient demand exists in the area for this type of service. The Alberta Cancer Board is only willing to support a follow-up clinic in High Prairie which would be staffed from the Associate Cancer Clinic in Grande Prairie.”
Peace Country Hea- lth and High Prairie officials were quick to respond. Although the news is good the space will be provided, the fact money will not be provided for operations is concerning.
As you are aware, Peace Country Health continues to struggle to meet the current health service demands within our allotted annual budget,” writes PCH chair Marvin Moore. “With this in mind, we will need additional funding from your department to ensure we have adequate operating resources to operate a CT scanner once it is installed.”
The Town of High Prairie, M.D. of Big Lakes, High Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce and High Prairie Community Health Council all agree to continue the lobby to the government to provide money to operate the services.
High Prairie Mayor Rick Dumont says the government should invest in High Prairie.
“ . . .a relatively small investment by the Government of Alberta in our community health facility in 2008 will return benefits to our region every year for four, five or more decades,” writes Dumont.
George Keay, High Prairie project steering committee member, is disturbed with the claim that the renal dialysis unit “could not be operational until sufficient demand exists in the area for this type of service” in Hancock’s words. He says all the numbers were presented at a November meeting. The lobby must continue, he says.
PCH’s project manager for the hospital, Dalton Russell, attended the M.D. and town council meetings Jan. 9.
“What can we do to help you?” asked Triangle, Gilwood Councillor Ken Matthews.
Russell also replied to continue the lobby the government to provide money.
Fast start propels Raiders to win over crosstown rival Saints
Prairie River’s Amadeus Giroux, in front, dribbles past St. Andrew’s Saint Justin Monahan.
South Peace News
The Prairie River Raiders jumped out to a quick lead and never trailed in winning their season opener 51-39 over their crosstown rivals, the St. Andrew’s Saints.
The game marked the first boy’s action in Smoky River Junior High School Basketball League action this season.
PRJH led 19-8 after the first quarter. They used their speed and a lack of effort defensively at the St. Andrew’s end of the court in bolting out to a big lead.
However, as the game wore on the Saints started to adjust. The bottom line was, for the last three quarters the teams were only one point apart.
maw led all scorers with 19 points while Amadaus Giroux chipped in with 16 points of his own. Offensively, they did most of the damage.
Jarett Abram and Zach Auger each had six points while Harold Johnson and Colin Bjornson netted two points each.
Jared Dumont scored a team high 15 points for the Saints. The rest of the scoring was spread out between four players. Zak Stokes had nine points, Justin Monahan eight, Mike Ochran four and Josh Perry three points.
Both teams head into the Christmas break and will not resume action until Jan. 9.
The Raiders travel to McLennan to play the Eagles while the Saints play their home opener against Valleyview St. Stephen’s School.
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