Networking in Medicine Hat – health and health-care matters

IMAGINE Citizens kicked off our Fall 2018 engagement activities on October 27 with a networking event at the Medicine Hat College, attended by a small and very passionate group of local citizens.

IMAGINE Citizens introduced the current projects and people shared their experiences with, and interests in health and health care. Several community health leaders joined our conversations throughout the day, including Dr. Jeff Bratvold, a family physician with the Palliser Primary Care Network, Treena Klassen, Palliser PCN’s Executive Director, and Avril Torrence from Friends of Medicare.

As people talked in breakout format into the early afternoon, it was obvious that digital health and primary health care were passionate topics. Both are areas of focus for IMAGINE Citizens. Highlights of these discussions included: the recognition that there was an intentional partnership with the Palliser PCN and other service providers who were working together to communicate and share information about programs and services; concerns were raised that a shift to relationship-based care would be difficult to achieve given the current funding model; the funding model for primary health services also does not adequately support the complexity of care required by some older adults or those living with chronic health challenges. It was acknowledged that more could be done to expand the primary health care team especially interesting to the group was the role of a nurse care coordinator/navigator.

In the afternoon, three family members with Greg’s Wings Projects, along with about 40 community members viewed the 30-minute film Falling Through the Cracks: Greg’s Story. A lively discussion ensued.

A deep thank you to Dr. Bratvold, the Friends of Medicare (Palliser-Medicine Hat chapter), Dr. Carl Nohr and the Medicine Hat College for helping us to plan this wonderful day.

To learn more about what kind of information we talk about or if you are considering hosting a networking event in your community read our article from May 2018, Making Connections and Building Momentum: a Calgary Networking Event.

Stay tuned for more of our event happenings across Alberta communities. We look forward to seeing you at one of them.

Submitted by the Medicine Hat Event Team