EDMONTON – The Alberta government is spending $45 million on starting up nine family care clinics.
Health Minister Fred Horne said Thursday that these will be part of small community networks where many health professionals team up to give patients several services.
As well, the province is providing $32 million to primary care networks to improve hours and offer more same-day appointments.
The clinics will be in Edmonton, Calgary, Peace River and central Alberta, adding to three already running.
Horne says the goal is to divert patients away from hospitals by keeping them healthy so they don’t need acute care.
He says about five per cent of people use 65 per cent of Alberta’s health-care resources.
“Every time we admit a patient to hospital for a complication of something like diabetes that could have been treated or maybe even prevented in the community, that’s actually a failure of the health-care system, not a success,” Horne said.
Former premier Alison Redford had promised to build 140 clinics during her election campaign.
“I think that was a very ambitious, perhaps overly ambitious, target,” Horne said.