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New pilot projects aims to help Alberta stroke patients

June 27, 2014 – A new stroke rehabilitation pilot project in Alberta is helping to reduce the number of days patients spend in hospital.

The pilot, being delivered in rural and small urban areas, began last March in Grande Prairie and delivers one-on-one stroke rehabilitation programs into the homes of patients.


June 27, 2014
By Massage Therapy Canada staff

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The Stroke Action Plan improves the quality of inpatient and community
care for stroke patients outside Alberta’s major cities. The plan uses
provincial standards to ensure inpatient care in rural settings is the
same quality as the care delivered in larger urban areas – and ensures
patients have early and timely access to rehabilitation.

“We know
that stroke patients want to return to their homes as soon as possible
after hospitalization and by providing home-based therapy options, we
are improving outcomes for patients while they remain in the comfort of
their homes. This is part of the government’s ongoing effort to provide
health care services to Albertans closer to home,” said Fred Horne,
Minister of Health.

Grande Prairie’s ten-member team includes
recreational and occupational therapists, a speech language pathologist,
a social worker, a nurse, and therapy assistants.

“The pilot
project aims to provide a more supervised re-entry into the home
environment after a stroke. We help people return to their regular lives
in the community – back to doing their grocery shopping, getting
dressed or cooking. This program is about getting stroke patients back
into their routine. We want them to be as independent as possible,” said
Vickie Kaminski, president and CEO of Alberta Health Services.

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Under
the Building Alberta Plan, the provincial government is investing in
families and communities, living within its means, and opening new
markets for Alberta’s resources to ensure government is able to fund the
services that matter most to Albertans, the government said.

“The
impact of this pilot project on Grande Prairie stroke patients is
considerable. Giving residents the option of rehabilitation in their
homes means a faster re-entry into the community, and back to their
day-to-day lives,” said Everett McDonald, Member of the Legislative
Assembly for Grande Prairie-Smoky.


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