Mobile health clinic coming to region
A mobile health clinic will begin operations this fall in St. Ambroise, Langruth, and Plumas. (Submitted Photo)
The Southern Health-Sante Sud region will get a boost in its health care this fall when a mobile health unit starts visiting rural communities.
“Based on the success of our first mobile clinic in the Prairie Mountain Health region so far, we expect families in Southern Health-Santé Sud to quickly see benefits from this initiative,” said Health Minister Erin Selby.
The clinic’s nurse practitioner and registered nurse will have access to electronic medical records of patients when they examine them in either of the two exam rooms. The nurse practitioner will be able to prescribe medication and can order diagnostic testing for clients.
A lab is also located in the mobile clinic for blood and urine testing, as well as testing for infections. No x-rays will be performed.
“It’s in place to serve under-serviced communities who don’t have a lot of health care services,” said Southern Health executive director Greg Reid, who is responsible for the primary health care integration program.
“The clinic will be able to treat minor ailments, provide routine check-ups, and anything people would normally go to a clinic for.”
The clinic will visit the following communities once a week when it is introduced in the fall: Plumas (Mondays), Langruth (Tuesdays), St. Ambroise (Wednesdays), Woodridge (Thursdays), and Dominion City (Fridays). The medical facility will take walk-ins or residents can call toll-free at 1-888-644-3515 to make an appointment. Those who visit the clinic and have their own physician can also send a report of their visit to their doctor if they so wish.
“We’re hoping to do a soft launch in July, but we’ll be fully operational in September,” said Reid.
Reid couldn’t say what the cost is associated with the clinic, but that the province is fully funding it. The health authority is leasing the unit through the Manitoba Vehicle Equipment and Management Agency and will station the clinic in Southport and Steinbach during down time. Once operational, the facility is expected to provide service to at least 1,000 people in the region.
“We’re really excited that this is going to mean better access for people and better healthcare because this clinic will be in a position to manage chronic health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, that people normally would have to travel outside their community to get proper ongoing care,” said Reid.
A third mobile clinic is expected to open next summer for the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority. The clinics are part of the province’s Family Doctor for All strategy.