The Town of Eckville will be putting their support behind Red Deer City Council’s recent motion to expand the Regional Hospital.
Eckville will be showing their support through letters issued to both the City of Red Deer and the provincial government.
The motion made by Coun. Dwayne Meyers is in support of reinstating the Red Deer Regional Hospital to the capitol priorities list. The hospital was removed from the list after 2015.
“Anything that has to do with better health care is a good thing,” Coun. Meyers justified.
Council voted unanimously in favour of the letters of support.
Mayor Helen Posti said she would like to see the hospital in Red Deer reinstated on a priority list due simply to the vast numbers the hospital sees everyday.
“The hospital sees over 300,000 people from all over the region. It can’t handle it, it can barely handle its own city,” Posti said.
With the Advanced Ambulatory Care Services (AACS) opening in 2018 in Sylvan Lake, it is possible the hospital will see more manageable numbers in the emergency room.
Posti would like to see the hospital in Red Deer expand, but believes it will take some time before before it may become a reality, citing the nearly 10 years it took for the hospital to open it’s third floor.
Coun. Scott Kinely spoke about how it appears the priorities in the province are Calgary and Edmonton, with outside areas being pushed aside.
“Ever since they got rid of the health regions, the local voices aren’t being heard,” he said.
Council also discussed how they would like to see health care change in both the region and in the province as a whole.
Council mentioned a recent story about a doctor in Red Deer who could not be cared for in his own hospital.
“Something needs to change if the doctors themselves have to be taken elsewhere to be cared for,” said Coun. Kinley.
A rally will be held Sept. 10 from 2:30 – 5 p.m. in the parking lot of the Memorial Centre in Red Deer around shortages at the Regional Hospital.