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Local hospital expands women’s health program

September 26, 2016

FORT SASKATCHEWAN — More women are accessing obstetrical and gynecological care closer to home thanks to expanded services provided by a newly recruited physician at the Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital.

Since April, Dr. Olusegun Oyewole, a Canadian fellowship-trained obstetrician and gynecologist, has been providing care at the hospital and the Ross Creek Medical Clinic.

He was recruited through the ongoing efforts of Alberta Health Services (AHS) and will lead improvements to the hospital’s women’s health program, including the addition of procedures previously unavailable at the facility.

“Fort Saskatchewan is a growing community and it’s important to ensure women here can access a broad range of women’s health services without leaving the city,” says AHS President and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu. “I’m pleased AHS recruitment efforts and site leadership have led to the expansion of obstetrical and gynecological care in Fort Saskatchewan, which will improve the patient experience for women and their families.”

“Having more obstetrical and gynecological services available locally is important for Alberta’s growing communities,” said Sarah Hoffman, Minister of Health. “The addition of Dr. Oyewole to the health care team at the Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital is key to strengthening health care delivery for women and families in the area.”

Melissa Kelm, 35, one of Dr. Oyewole’s first patients, couldn’t be happier to have access to a gynecologist in her own community.

Following the birth of her son four years ago, the Fort Saskatchewan resident had experienced bleeding and challenges getting pregnant for a second time. Upon his arrival to Fort Saskatchewan, Kelm was referred to Dr. Oyewole, who suspected she may have endometriosis - a condition resulting from the appearance of endometrial tissue outside the uterus and causing pelvic pain.

A week later she was at the hospital for two abdominal diagnostic procedures. Dr. Oyewole confirmed the endometriosis, which he treated with cauterization, and found that one of her fallopian tubes was completely blocked.

“Thanks to Dr. Oyewole I have a better understanding of the issues causing my infertility and other issues related to pain and heavy, irregular menses,” says Kelm.

In April, the Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital celebrated the 500th baby born at the facility since it opened four years ago.

Hospital site director Heather Durstling expects that number to grow at a faster rate with the hiring of Dr. Oyewole and an additional physician, who will begin on or before the new year.

“Driving to the city when you’re in labour can add stress to an already emotionally and physically demanding experience,” says Durstling. “Adding Dr. Oyewole to our care team means more women can access enhanced gynecology care and deliver their babies close to home rather than commuting to Edmonton.”

Kelly Purcell had just a five-minute drive to the Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital when Dr. Oyewole delivered her second child in August.

“I was referred to him right away and I loved being able to do all my prenatal care in Fort Saskatchewan,” says Purcell. “It was so convenient for me and my family.”

Dr. Oyewole arrived in Alberta from North Battleford, Sask., where he had an established practice for six years. His wife, Bolalanle, is a midwife who is working in Edmonton.

Dr. Oyewole received his medical training in Nigeria, post-graduate family medicine training at the University of Pretoria in South Africa, post-graduate obstetric medical training in Ireland, and completed his Canadian fellowship in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Ottawa.

His general gynecology practice covers virtually all areas including urogynecology (incontinence), pelvic organ prolapse, infertility, abnormal pap smears, and minimally invasive surgeries, including total laparoscopic hysterectomy.

Christine Sheasgreen, Chair of the Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital Foundation, says the expanded service is greatly needed by the women in the community.

"I am proud to say that through donor generosity, the The Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital Foundation is providing $250,000 towards enhancing the Women's Health Program in Fort Saskatchewan. This is an extremely important and worthwhile endeavour, and greatly needed in our community."

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

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For media inquiries, contact:

Sharman Hnatiuk
AHS Communications
780-863-0629