Temporary hours change at Wabasca-Desmarais Healthcare Centre

June 10, 2022

WABASCA — Alberta Health Services (AHS) is temporarily changing hours of service at Wabasca-Desmarais Healthcare Centre, due to a lack of registered and licensed practical nursing staff and an inability to secure temporary coverage.   

Until June 21, 2022, the Wabasca-Desmarais Healthcare Centre Emergency Departmet will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and closed overnight, from 7:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. This will allow existing staff to provide consistent service for twelve hours each day. In-patient admissions have been paused. 

Patient safety and care remain the highest priorities for AHS. The organization is working hard to ensure everyone will receive the care they need through its partnership with EMS and a robust regional network of healthcare centres.   

“This decision reflects our best option for providing consistent, ongoing care at this facility over the next two weeks,” says Stacy Greening, Chief Zone Officer with AHS North Zone. “The change is temporary and we are dedicated to returning to normal operating hours as soon as possible. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.” 

Recruitment of nurses is a challenge across North America. It can be particularly difficult outside of urban centres and with practitioners who bring specialty skills.  

AHS has a dedicated team focused on recruitment efforts. These efforts include aggressively pursuing both Canadian and internationally trained professionals; working to support flexible roles and scope of practice within AHS; and consulting with post-graduate education programs to enable work experience in non-urban facilities. 

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.