Gap in services at Barrhead, Peace River health centres over weekend

Surgical services are shuttered at health centres in two Alberta towns this weekend due to staffing shortages. 

About 500km north of Edmonton, at the Peace River Health Centre, the operating room and obstetric services will be closed from 7:30 a.m. on Saturday to 1 p.m. on Sunday, according to a news release from Alberta Health Services (AHS). 

AHS says maternity patients should still come to Peace River Health Centre for care, and if necessary they will be diverted to Grande Prairie Regional Hospital. 

“The physician assessing will ensure if and by what transportation method the patient is safe to travel,” the AHS said.  

At Barrhead Healthcare Centre, about 120km north of Edmonton, surgical services are cancelled until Monday due to a gap in anesthesiologist coverage.

AHS also said the lack of anesthesiologists could impact some obstetric services. 

The services at Barrhead are set to resume at 7:30 a.m. Monday. 

AHS calls the closures at both locations “a last resort.”

CBC has reached out to AHS for comment on the service disruptions. 

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