Interior Health set to move dialysis equipment from Invermere to Sparwood

Interior Health has decided to go ahead and move equipment from the Invermere Dialysis Unit to the Sparwood Hospital.

  • Jul. 18, 2013 5:00 p.m.

By The Golden Star

 

After months of controversy in the community, Interior Health has decided to go ahead and move equipment from the Invermere Dialysis Unit to the Sparwood Hospital.

The unit has been closed since the beginning of 2013. Interior Health made the decision to relocate the service out of Invermere because limited patient volumes and ongoing staffing challenges meant the unit was not sustainable where it was.

“I’m confident that the right decision was made in Invermere to be able to provide consistent, quality renal care,” Paula James, regional director for the renal program in Interior Health, told Black Press.

James said the care in Invermere was not consistent, and certainly was not ideal for the patients, or the lone nurse who worked in the Dialysis Unit. This is the only unit of its kind in B.C. operating with only one nurse.

“We’ve looked at the numbers and we don’t see it changing in the future, but never say never. Anything could happen,” she said.

The East Kootenay Regional Hospital District has been advocating for maintained renal care in the region since the unit shut down.

“I am not surprised, but extremely disappointed,” said Golden councillor Chris Hambruch about Interior Health’s decision. Hambruch also serves as a director on the board of the East Kootenay Regional Hospital District.

“The continued erosion of services in rural communities is, in my opinion, a major contributing factor in the declining state of rural B.C. Until the political masters in Victoria come to realize that rural communities are vital to the well being of the province, the continual spiral to the bottom will continue.”

There are still options for renal care if there are patients in Golden who require dialysis. In-home dialysis with personal equipment is becoming more common, and also reduces cost, travel and time.

James acknowledges the emotional reaction to the unit’s move, but says that Interior Health has to take an overview look at health care services. It was determined that the hospital in Sparwood would make greater use of the dialysis equipment than Invermere.

Just Posted

Structure fire displaces Sparwood family

Family uninjured. One pet lost. House remains uninhabitable due to severe damage.

Junior journalism program launches in Fernie

Young writers excited to step into world of journalism, work to be published in upcoming edition

New MRI unit increases access

Interior Health aims for 5100 exams in Cranbrook this year

DNA test links two cougar incidents in Fernie

Further information has surfaced linking a child that was attacked by a… Continue reading

CO Service euthanize emaciated black bear

The animal had left its den and taken shelter in a shed with cattle.

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

RCMP confirm witnesses say body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

B.C. fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware kittens in wood pile near garbage pile fire that got out of hand

QUIZ: How much do you know about Easter?

Take this short quiz and put your knowledge to the test

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

Global Affairs warns Canadians in Sri Lanka there could be more attacks

A series of bomb blasts killed at least 207 people and injured hundreds more

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

Most Read