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Bed closures reported at five Peace Country healthcare facilities

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Five healthcare facilities in the Peace Country currently have bed shortages. That’s according to a new Alberta Health Services webpage that shows sites with reduced care spaces and beds.

As first reported by the opposition NDP in Grande Prairie, the QEII Hospital has had 14 of its 181 acute care beds reduced temporarily due to staff shortages from vacation, vacancies, and ongoing recruitment. The shortage started at the beginning of March and is expected to end by August 31st.

Facilities shown in yellow have temporary bed or space reductions (Alberta Health Services)

In Beaverlodge, six of the 18 acute care beds at the Beaverlodge Municipal Hospital have been closed since April 5th, as well as four out of the 12 acute care beds at the Central Peace Health Complex in Spirit River are closed. At the High Prairie Health Complex, 10 out of 30 acute care beds have been closed since March 1st, along with five out of 20 acute care beds at Sacred Heart Community Health Centre in Maclennan. All four facilities are expected to be back to full capacity by the end of August.

As of July 30th, there are no shortages at AHS facilities in Valleyview, Fairview, Peace River, or Manning. There are 27 facilities across the province reporting shortages, including 16 in the AHS North zone.

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“Temporary bed closures are not uncommon for AHS or any other health system, especially in the summer – when staffing levels are historically lower as our healthcare workers tend to take more personal time or vacation,” a press release from AHS explains. “The system is constantly dynamic, and we manage beds on an hourly and daily basis, depending on patient need, staffing levels, acuity of patients and many other factors.”

According to the new webpage, 98 per cent of about 8,500 acute care beds across the province are open, along with 97.1 per cent of about 1,200 emergency department care spaces.

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