May 31 is World No Tobacco Day

May 31 marks World No Tobacco Day. The goal of the Day is to contribute to protecting present and future generations from the health consequences of tobacco as well as the social, environmental, and economic effects that tobacco and its addiction can have.

For additional information on tobacco cessation and World No Tobacco Day please visit any of the following links:

Safety Logo Contest

The Cypress Health Region is holding an open contest for the design of a safety logo which will be used as a visual reminder of past, present, and future patients and staff as well as the region’s over-arching commitment of safety.

The logo will recognize the collaborative commitment that the Cypress Health Region has with patients, working together to achieve a safer environment for both the public and staff. It will be displayed in all Cypress Health Region facilities and will be used in all safety correspondence including safety brochures and safety statements. The logo and its story will also have its own page on www.cypresshealth.ca.

“The idea for this logo design contest came from patients, family members, and staff discussing the importance of safety and thinking of ways to honour patients and staff that have been caused harm in the past,” commented Jill Gates, Accreditation and Patient Safety Coordinator for the region. “This logo is a great opportunity for people to put their design skills to the test. Whether it’s a hand drawn logo or something created digitally, we’re excited to see what community members can come up with.”

Those interested are encouraged to keep designs simple to allow for scaling of the logo to occur without the loss of detail. All types of drawing tools will be accepted, however, photographs are not allowed. Judging of the designs will be made by a panel of patient and family representatives and staff of the region. The winning logo design will be recognized at the 2014 Safety Expo in September.

Complete details of the safety logo design contest can be found on the Cypress Health Region’s website. Submissions will be accepted until June 30, 2014. Good luck to those who participate!

Shaunavon CEC Continues to Meet Needs of Community

Since the formal implementation of the Collaborative Emergency Centre (CEC) model of care on November 1, 2013, residents of Shaunavon and surrounding areas have enjoyed stable, predictable health services at the Shaunavon Hospital and Care Centre. This consistency continues to be offered at the facility despite recent changes to personnel.

Dr. Siva Balasingam, one of three full-time practicing physicians in the Primary Health Care clinic, has submitted her resignation and worked her last day in the community earlier this month. Upon receipt of her resignation the region immediately began to secure locum physician coverage and has been able to resume a full physician complement through these efforts. In the interim, work is being done to recruit an additional physician for the community via the Saskatchewan International Physician Practice Assessment (SIPPA) program. It is hopeful that an announcement of a new physician can be made in the coming months, pending the logistics that need to be finalized which is a standard of the physician recruitment process in Saskatchewan.

Other healthcare providers, including Dr. Louwrens, Dr. Rahmani, Dr. Barretto, and nurse practitioners Sherry Hornung and Melissa Carignan, can continue to be seen during the regular hours of 8:00am to 8:00pm, 7 days per week. Anyone wishing to access the Clinic is strongly encouraged to make an appointment. Appointments with one of the providers are regularly available the same or next day.

The community is reminded to only come to the Hospital as a ‘walk-in’ if they are facing an emergency situation.

“Making an appointment to see a health provider is an important part of the CEC model because it ensures our human resources are properly utilized and it also reduces the risk of longer wait times for patients to see a health provider,” commented Greg Grant, Director of Primary Health Care. “When someone comes in to the Hospital without an appointment and asks to see a doctor they have to be referred to the emergency department even if their intent is to see a physician at the clinic. This is due to our emergency protocols and has a trickle-down effect because it takes human resources away from the clinic. As is the case in any hospital, we encourage people to only use the emergency room for true medical emergencies.”

To book an appointment at the Shaunavon Primary Health Care Clinic please call 306-297-1940. This booking number will allow you access to a physician or nurse practitioner.

For more information on the Collaborative Emergency Centre model of care you may visit the Cypress Health Region’s CEC webpage.

Government of Saskatchewan Calls for Public Representatives

Saskatchewan residents who want to make a difference in health care have the opportunity to serve on a committee that helps ensure decisions on out-of-province and out-of-country medical coverage are consistent with legislation, policies and guidelines.

The Ministry of Health is seeking motivated people to fill several public representative positions on the Health Services Review Committee, an independent body which reviews government decisions made on out-of-province and out-of-country medical coverage. Closing date for submission of resumés is June 6.

“We’re looking for people who would like to share their knowledge and voice, putting the interests of patients first,” Health Minister Dustin Duncan said. “Public members play an important role in ensuring the best interests of Saskatchewan residents are represented.”

Patients may request a review of Ministry of Health decisions to ensure that government policy was followed.

Although prior approval is not required for most hospital and physician services received in other provinces, coverage for out-of-country treatment is only considered in exceptional circumstances and must have prior approval from the Ministry of Health. Information on out-of-province and out-of-country medical services can be found at www.health.gov.sk.ca/out-of-province.

Saskatchewan citizens with relevant skills including prior experience on boards, councils or committees are encouraged to apply. Typically these are three-year appointments, which may be extended for a second term. Meetings convene in Regina, Saskatoon or other locations in Saskatchewan. The time commitment ranges from four to 12 days a year. Travel expenses and an honourarium will be paid.

Saskatchewan residents interested in serving on the committee should submit a resumé including a history of their community involvement and volunteer activities, along with relevant education and employment experience, to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health, Health Services Review Committee, 3475 Albert Street, Regina SK S4S 6X6, or email HealthServices.ReviewCommittee@health.gov.sk.ca.

For further details, visit www.health.gov.sk.ca/HSRC.

Maple Creek Services Resume

UPDATED: Wednesday, May 21st @ 9:00am

The following locations will be providing programs and services until the new Southwest Integrated Healthcare Facility (SIHF) is ready for occupancy this fall:

  • Former TransGas Building – 728 Pacific Avenue (306-662-2611)
    • Emergency outpatient service – 24 hours per day
    • Laboratory, x-ray, observation beds, ambulatory care
    • Ambulance services – 24 hours per day
  • Former Royal Bank Building – 202 Maple Street (306-662-2829)
    • Primary Health Care Clinic – physicians, nurse practitioner appointments
  • Cypress Lodge Nursing Home – Highway #21 South (306-662-2671)
    • Home Care – available in the front offices, located inside main entrance
    • Public Health Nursing – available in south solarium area
    • Therapies – available in South Wing, follow signage
    • Community Health (mental health, addictions, dietitian, etc.) – health provider will give you details on location to meet you
  • Other phone numbers:
    • Therapies – 306-662-3181
    • Public Health – 306-662-5336
    • Mental Health – 1-866-786-2510
    • Home Care – 306-662-5333

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    UPDATED: Wednesday, May 14th @ 3:00 pm

    Through the large efforts of many, the Primary Health Care Clinic and acute care services in the community of Maple Creek are returning to operation.

    • Physician and Nurse Practitioner clinic appointments resumed in the morning of May 14th, from the former Royal Bank building at 202 Maple Street.
    • Emergency outpatient services will resume at 7:00 pm on Wednesday, May 14th and will be available at the former TransGas building at 728 Pacific Avenue. This service will be available 24 hours per day and will be provided by nursing staff and physicians.
    • If you are faced with a medical emergency, dial 9-1-1 and an ambulance will be immediately dispatched to assist you.

    The staff of Maple Creek and the Cypress Health Region are very appreciative of the public’s understanding and patience during this transition period.

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    UPDATED: Tuesday, May 13th @ 10:30 am

    RE-LOCATION OF SERVICES STARTING TODAY

    Over the past four days, the staff from Maple Creek and the Cypress Health Region has been very busy preparing for a relocation of programs and services that were offered from the Hospital building. Alternate locations have been found for the majority of programs and services to be available for the public to access.

    The following locations will be used to provide programs and services until further notice:

    TRANS GAS BUILDING – 728 Pacific Avenue, Maple Creek

    It is anticipated that the following services will be available at this location, as of Wednesday, May 14th @ 7:00 pm:

    • Emergency Outpatient Services (24 hours per day) – nursing staff will be based at this location
    • Ambulatory Care, Lab and X-ray, Observation Beds
    • Ambulance Services – ambulance and staff will be based at this location

    OLD ROYAL BANK BUILDING – 202 Maple Street, Maple Creek

    • Primary Health Care Clinic (physicians, nurse practitioners) will be available at this location
    • Patients will be seen on a walk-in basis as of 1:00 pm Tuesday, May 13th.
    • It is anticipated that regular appointments will be back to normal as of Wednesday, May 14th

    CYPRESS LODGE NURSING HOME – Highway #21 South, Maple Creek

    • Home Care – will be available in the front offices, just inside the main entrance
    • Public Health Nursing – will be available in the South Solarium area; please use main entrance and follow the signage.
    • Therapies – will be available in the South Wing, please use main entrance and follow the signage.
    • Community Health (ex. mental health, addictions, dietitian, etc.) – your health provider will provide you with details on a location to meet with you; a more permanent location is being determined.

    Please watch for further updates as the situation is being revised and enhanced on a regular basis.  As well, the Town of Maple Creek’s Tourism Facebook page and other community Facebook pages will be receiving all updates and will be posting them for their followers to view and pass along to others.

    The Cypress Health Region and Maple Creek staff appreciates your understanding and patience during this time of transition. Many efforts are being made to provide as many of the programs and services as possible within the challenges of the current situation.

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    Updated: Friday, May 9, 2014 @ 1:25pm

    The Maple Creek Hospital is closed.

    The following services are currently unavailable: emergency outpatient services, lab/xray, inpatient admissions, home care, public health, community health, and therapies. In addition, some appointments at the Primary Health Care Clinic and community health-based programming have been post-poned. Those whose appointments have been affected by these post-ponements have been contacted directly.

    The region is currently working on contingency plans for health services in the community. Current efforts have resulted in the following tentative plan:

    Primary Health Care

    The old Royal Bank building, at the corner of Maple Street and 1st Avenue, is being modified to be the temporary home of Primary Health Care services. Health region staff are working hard to prepare this location to accommodate primary care services. It is anticipated that the Clinic will resume operations on Tuesday, May 13. Appointments can be made by calling 306-662-2829.

    Emergency Outpatient Services/Lab/X-ray

    The TransGas building, located at the corner of Pacific Avenue and Harder Street, will become the temporary location of outpatient emergency services, lab services, and limited diagnostic imaging services (via portable x-ray machine). It is anticipated that these services will become available during the middle of the week of May 12-16. Staff are also working at this location to prepare it to be the temporary home of these services.

    Ambulance services have not been disrupted as a result of these contingency plans.

    Public Health/Community Health/Therapies/Home Care

    Public Health services, Community Health services, Therapy services, and Home Care will be stationed at the Cypress Lodge Nursing Home effective Monday, March 12.

    As is always the case, if you are facing a medical emergency, please dial 9-1-1 and an ambulance will be immediately dispatched to assist you. The nearest acute facility emergency outpatient services are located at Shaunavon, Leader, Swift Current, and Medicine Hat (Alberta).

    Updates will continue to be provided to this webpage on a regular basis. Please check back often. The Maple Creek staff members and health region appreciate the public’s understanding during this situation.

Relocation of Services Complete in Maple Creek

Following several days of massive teamwork, the relocation of programs and services from the Maple Creek Hospital to other buildings within the community is now complete.

A decision to close the existing Maple Creek Hospital was made on May 9th due to issues with deteriorating roofing membranes and resulting water penetration into the building. Emphasis was placed on relocating the services to other locations to ensure stable and consistent access to programs and services were available until the new SIHF was ready for occupancy this fall.

Gloria Illerbrun, Executive Director of Health Services for Cypress Health Region, was extremely impressed with the overall teamwork and cooperation from many individuals and organizations during the impromptu transfer. “I cannot extend enough appreciation for the efforts of our Maple Creek staff, managers from throughout the region, community partners, and others for their many efforts over the past number of days,” commented Illerbrun. “Once the decision was made to relocate, alternate locations were quickly identified, and everyone dug in their heels and went to work. It was amazing to watch how everyone banded together to get to where we are today.”

Illerbrun was quick to point out that the Town of Maple Creek was very appreciative of the tough situation that existed and were quick to respond to our needs. “The Town was helpful right from the start and assisted the transition process in so many ways,” added Illerbrun. “We were so thankful for their partnership in making this work.”

The following locations will be providing programs and services until the new Southwest Integrated Healthcare Facility (SIHF) is ready for occupancy this fall:

Former TransGas Building – 728 Pacific Avenue

  • Emergency outpatient service – 24 hours per day
  • Laboratory, x-ray, observation beds, ambulatory care
  • Ambulance services – 24 hours per day

Former Royal Bank Building – 202 Maple Street

  • Primary Health Care Clinic – physicians, nurse practitioner appointments

Cypress Lodge Nursing Home – Highway #21 South

  • Home Care – available in the front offices, located inside main entrance
  • Public Health Nursing – available in south solarium area
  • Therapies – available in South Wing, follow signage
  • Community Health (mental health, addictions, dietitian, etc.) – health provider will give you details on location to meet you.

The health region also would like to acknowledge the many individuals and organizations that provided their assistance and flexibility to reduce the turnaround time in making the programs available once again. Appreciation is extended to the Town of Maple Creek’s Council and staff, TransGas, SaskEnergy, community contractors and service providers, SaskTel, Salvation Army, Cypress Lodge staff and residents, and many others for interrupting your daily routines and re-prioritizing their tasks.

“This relocation of services is a true example of community spirit, partnership, and teamwork in making sure that the resumption of health care provision to residents of Maple Creek and surrounding areas was a top priority,” added Illerbrun. “The staff of Maple Creek and health region is forever grateful.”

Further updates will be provided on the health region’s website at www.cypresshealth.ca and residents are encouraged to visit the website for the latest information on the relocation and the progress on the SIHF construction site.

Bike Rodeo Takes Place May 14

Spring is a great time of the year to get outdoors. Cycling is an excellent form of transportation and recreation for every age group: it promotes improved health and physical activity, and it is a ideal way to be social and have fun. Cycling is an activity that requires specific skills and behaviors. Young cyclists need to learn these safe skills and behaviours so they can reduce their risk of injury when cycling. Bike Safety Week is the perfect time to promote and educate our children and extended community on the importance of safe cycling for all.

Youth Advisory Council in Swift Current

The Community Youth Advisory Council in Swift Current aims to promote youth to participate in local politics and civic issues that have a direct impact on their demographic. The group is seeking suitable youth-aged volunteers to become members of the Council in a variety of available categories.

The Youth Advisory Council is looking to recruit youth for the 18 member council. The goal is to have one representative from the City of Swift Current, Chinook School Division, and the Cypress Health Region; six student representatives from the Swift Current Comprehensive High School; two student representatives from Maverick School; two student representatives from Great Plains College; one to two youth-at-large representatives; and up to three positions to function as Council Coordinators in a facilitative and supportive role. Meetings are held on a monthly basis and membership involves a one year term with a chance to renew for up to three years.

In the past the Youth Advisory Council have hosted such events as a Skate and Shinny Tournament, with local businesses and the Swift Current Broncos participating, as well as supporting local youth programs through advertising, promotion, and media releases. The council was approached to provide their feedback on important civic issues such as youth homelessness and violence towards youth in our community. The youth also presented at the Provincial Drug Strategy Conference in May 2013.

The City of Swift Current Community Youth Advisory Council was initiated in the spring of 2011 and is a joint effort between City of Swift Current Council, the Chinook School Division, and the Cypress Health Region. The Youth Advisory Council operates under a mandate of providing a bridge between the three organizations and the youth in the community of Swift Current. It will function as an advisory board on current issues to the appropriate agencies in Swift Current.

Any youth interested in being a member of the City of Swift Current Youth Advisory Council are asked to complete a registration form located at Swift Current Comprehensive High School, Maverick High School, City Hall, The Center, Great Plains College. All youth who reside in Swift Current and are under the age of 21 are welcome to apply. Application deadline is May 31, 2014.