OROMOCTO, N.B. – Horizon Health Network and 5th Canadian Division Support Base Gagetown unveiled the plan for the new health clinic in Oromocto Tuesday.
The clinic will have a physician, two nurse practitioners, nursing staff, a dietician, social worker and administrative staff, to serve the town of Oromocto, the military base and the Oromocto First Nation.
It’s a project that’s been in the works for five years.
The clinic begun as a thesis proposal, by Janet Weber, a nurse practitioner who now serves the military base.
“There were people who’s health was suffering, and once you seen how much they were suffering, you couldn’t not see it,” Weber said. “And you couldn’t not do something about it.”
She collaborated with several others, and took it to Horizon Health. A team has been pushing the clinic to become realized ever since.
Military families move three times more than the average Canadian family. So, while it’s already difficult for people to find family doctors, military families have an even more challenging time.
“They come, and they’re on wait lists until they leave and then they go to a new province and they’re on another wait list and they haven’t received care,” Weber said.
In some cases, it’s caused health problems to deteriorate much quicker.
“I see people who are coming to me, who’ve not had regular screening, who’ve not had regular children checks, well-women checks, males who’ve not had regular check ups in several years,” said nurse practitioner Raelyn Lagacé, who’s already treating some patients in Oromocto.
The clinic will be built within an existing space on Iroquois Avenue and will open its doors in November. Horizon Health estimates it will serve 3,000 patients.