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Fort McMurray, Alberta – On Monday, February 12th, the Northern Lights Health Foundation, Alberta Health Services, the Suncor Energy Foundation, and local dignitaries held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the completion of an expansion to increase capacity of the Medicine, Surgery and Continuing Care units at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre.

AHS Vice President and Medical Director for Northern Alberta Dr. Mark Joffe, Suncor’s Regional Operations executive, Bruno Francoeur, RMWB Mayor Don Scott, along with the Health Foundation Board of Directors and guests gathered at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre to acknowledge this significant achievement for healthcare in the region.

This project has created six new non-acute care patient rooms for a total of ten new patient beds on the second floor of the Health Centre. The positive impact of this increase in capacity will be felt by patients and AHS medical staff in Acute Care, Medicine, Surgical, and Long Term and Continuing care units as each area will gain additional room to deliver the appropriate care based on their patient’s medical needs.

 “As part of the community, we are incredibly proud to support the great work that is being done at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre to improve patient care,” said Bruno Francoeur, Regional Operations executive. “This expansion will benefit all Wood Buffalo residents and will go a long way in enhancing overall healthcare in our region.”

These new patient rooms will initially be utilized by long-term care residents who are awaiting the construction of the Willow Square property and for whom no spaces are currently available on the fourth floor Continuing Care area of the Health Centre. When these patients move from acute care beds on the third floor Medicine unit it creates additional capacity for medical and surgical patients.

“We want to commend the Suncor Energy Foundation for its commitment to healthcare in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo,” says Dr. Verna Yiu, AHS President and CEO. “Their generous support will make a significant and lasting improvement to the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre that will benefit patients for years to come. We look forward to continue working with Suncor Energy and the Northern Lights Health Foundation to improve care in this community.”

Melanie Antoine, board chair of the Northern Lights Health Foundation adds “We are very pleased to acknowledge and celebrate this donation from the Suncor Energy Foundation. The project could not have been possible without their generous investment and their patience during the planning and construction process. At the Health Foundation we can clearly see the impact of individual and corporate donations and the positive influence on healthcare innovation. We are helping to build strong, healthy communities. Together.”

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