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March 22, 2000
(Health and Community Services)

Province committing more than $570,000 for 
dialysis units in St. Anthony and Clarenville

Health and Community Services Minister Roger Grimes today announced funding for a pilot initiative totaling more than $570,000 for the establishment of community-based kidney dialysis units in St. Anthony and Clarenville.

Minister Grimes said: "The establishment of these units will go a long way in helping individuals who require dialysis in communities serviced by St. Anthony and Clarenville. These individuals will now be able to get the treatment they require closer to home, thus reducing their need to travel to larger centres for the service."

For the development of the services in St. Anthony and Clarenville, there is a one-time total capital cost of $150,800 to purchase four dialysis machines, and an ongoing operating cost of $421,600 - a total of $572,400 in year one.

The decision to fund these services follows a July 1999 report of the Provincial Renal Advisory Committee on Dialysis. This report recommended the establishment of community-based units for those individuals whose medical condition allows them to receive treatment in a non-hospital based environment such as a clinic, long-term care facility or other community-based facility. St. Anthony and Clarenville were identified in the report as feasible locations for these services.

The Department of Health and Community Services will work with the regional health and community services boards, and the Chief of Nephrology at the Health Care Corporation of St. John�s, to purchase equipment and begin the necessary plans for implementation of this new service. It is expected individuals will be able to avail of the service later this year. "While there are only about a dozen individuals needing this service in these areas, it will be a great improvement for the patients and their families," said the minister.

The minister pointed out that today�s announcement is yet another example of the provincial government�s commitment to providing quality health care to Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

Media contact:

Karen McCarthy, Communications, (709)729-6670.

Carl Cooper, Communications, (709)729-1377.

20000 03 22 

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