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04/05/12 new renal Health Centre Officially Opens in Hodgson
For Immediate Release    
April 5, 2012, Hodgson, Manitoba— Community representatives, local youth and dialysis patients participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony today to officially open the new Hodgson Area Renal Health Centre.
The six-station renal health centre, attached to Percy E. Moore hospital, services the communities of Fisher River Cree Nation, Peguis First Nation, Kinonjeoshtegon (Jackhead) First Nation and the Rural Municipality of Fisher.
“This renal health centre reflects our commitment to expand dialysis services in rural and northern regions and provide renal health care services closer to home,” said Health Minister Theresa Oswald. “For those who have had to travel to receive dialysis treatments, this centre offers a significant improvement in their quality of life.”
”Education will also be a priority,” said Aboriginal and Northern Affairs Minister, Eric Robinson, attending the official opening on behalf of Minister Oswald. “The facility will deliver programs focusing on the prevention and early detection of renal disease, which is a key to reducing the burden of chronic kidney disease.”
The approximately $5 million project is a collaborative effort of the Interlake Regional Health Authority,  Manitoba Renal Program, Manitoba Health and Health Canada’s First Nation Inuit Health Branch, along with representatives from the communities being serviced. The facility will be managed by the Interlake RHA.
“We are pleased to be celebrating this unique federal, provincial, regional and local partnership that will help better address the health care needs of our region’s residents,” said Randy Lock, chief executive officer of the Interlake Regional Health Authority.
“Today is a very bright day for our community members who require dialysis and for our youth who will gain improved understanding of how to prevent dialysis from being a part of their future,” said Cindy Hart of Fisher River Cree Nation and chair of the Hodgson Renal Health Centre community advisory committee. 
Also on hand for the ribbon cutting was Dr. James Zacharias, medical director of the Local Centres Dialysis Program with the Manitoba Renal Program.
“Our goal is to prevent kidney disease altogether," said Zacharias. “When that is not possible, we work closely with the regional health authorities to provide the best care possible for people undergoing dialysis. Having this treatment close to home reduces the burden of the disease on the patient and their family."
Patients started receiving treatment in Hodgson on March 21. With the addition of the new renal health centre, the Interlake RHA now operates a total of 26 dialysis stations in Ashern, Gimli, Selkirk and Hodgson. In addition, the Manitoba Renal Program has three Winnipeg sites and is partnered with local heatlh authorities in the operation of locations in Brandon, Dauphin, Flin Flon, Island Lake, Norway House, Pine Falls, Portage la Prairie, Russell, Swan Valley, The Pas, Thompson and Winkler.
Hodgson’s renal health centre is 37 per cent more efficient than the Model National Energy Code standard and meets Manitoba Hydro’s Power Smart Building designation.  
For more information contact:
Lauralou Cicierski, Manager of Public Relations, Interlake RHA, 204.467.4747,
Jack Marquardson, Communication Services Manitoba, 204-945-2824
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