New medical center puts Kerrobert region's health in good hands
State-of-the-art facility the 'life's blood of our community'
Take out a giant stethoscope, and you’d find the heart of Kerrobert, SK, is now beating at the junction of Highway 21 and Manitoba Avenue.
That’s the location of the new $23-million Kerrobert and District Health Centre, now open after more than a decade in the conception, planning and construction stages.
“It’s the life’s blood of our community,” says Stew Seversen, a longtime Kerrobert town councilor and head of the KLD Wellness Foundation, which has steered the health-centre project through completion.
“There are three pillars that keep a community going—recreation, education and health,” adds Seversen. “This is a very, very important project to Kerrobert. So worthwhile. It means so much. It’s the biggest thing that’s happened in our community since the old hospital was built in the mid-1950s.”
First proposed in 2004, Kerrobert’s new integrated health center was built with financial support from government and the regional business community, including Enbridge. With a 42-bed facility for both acute and long-term care, it’s the nerve center for services that include diagnostics, emergency medical services (EMS), physiotherapy, occupational therapy, child/youth and mental health counselling, and a 24/7 emergency room.
The new facility, in operation since July, enjoyed a grand opening at the end of October. It serves a population of more than 44,000 in the Heartland Health Region, including the 1,100-plus residents of Kerrobert.
“Nearly all of these services have been available to our community before, but not all under the same roof,” notes Seversen. “We now have a doctor’s clinic within the facility, which is very big. Two ambulance bays, as well.”
With the Saskatchewan provincial government picking up 80 per cent of the tab, corporate support was also critical in creating the new facility. Enbridge is committed to enhancing the quality of life in communities near our pipelines and facilities; in the next five years, we expect our workforce to grow to more than 50 employees and contractors in Kerrobert, where we maintain storage facilities along our mainline pipeline right-of-way.
Since 2006, Enbridge has invested more than $510,000 in the new Kerrobert health facility, including financial support toward an X-ray with processor and a state-of-the-art telehealth system. And last week, we announced the donation of another $68,000 to Kerrobert EMS toward purchase of a defibrillator-cardiac monitor unit, a powerlift stretcher and a stairchair.
“Corporate support has been absolutely huge, and Enbridge is our biggest corporate partner,” says Seversen. “There aren’t words to thank Enbridge enough. I can’t think of a better corporate citizen.”
This latest contribution to Kerrobert EMS comes from our Safe Community program—as well as a one-time donation from Enbridge’s Line 3 Replacement Program, which is investing in communities affected by the proposed replacement of Line 3 from Hardisty, AB, to Superior, WI.
“This means everything to us,” says Jo-Ann Dupuis, co-ordinator for Kerrobert EMS. “We’re pretty darned happy. It’s wonderful that Enbridge’s Safe Community grant is there for emergency services.”