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Healthcare engagement session planned for Grand Falls-Windsor

The healthcare system and the way it is run affects every single Newfoundlander and Labradorian – inpatients, outpatients, someone who visits their family doctor once a year or someone whose family member is a frequent inpatient.

The EXCITE was constructed 2001 by the Town of Grand Falls-Windsor with some funding from the federal government and the province to help create jobs enhance local economic development. It is located on Queensway Park and currently has a number of tenants such as Hockey NL, the provincial government, a call centre and DPSI.

There likely isn’t a person in this province who wouldn’t have a suggestion or two regarding improvements and changes to the health care system.

A new research agency wants to hear those suggestions.

Newfoundland and Labrador Support is a new research support unit at Memorial University’s Faculty of Medicine, dedicated to patient-oriented research.

They’re hosting one of its series of engagement activities in Grand Falls-Windsor next week.

The session will include educational, social and discussion aspects. Refreshments will be served before a 5-10 minute information session to bring participants up to speed, then a facilitated conversation will take place.

Last year, the group held sessions on the Avalon, but realize there is more to Newfoundland and Labrador than just the Avalon and that the needs of patients will differ depending on which area of the province they live in.

“A lot of what goes on in Newfoundland and Labrador is directed from St. John’s with a St. Johns focus, and we really want to get away from that,” said Research Officer Dale Humphrey.

The May 9 sessions in Grand Falls-Windsor are at the Genomic Hearing Research Center in the Excite Building. There will be a 3–5 p.m. session and the other from 7–9 p.m. to accommodate work schedules.

“We provide resources for patient oriented research,” said Humphrey. “(This) is research that has direct impact on patients that incorporates patient experiences in research and addresses patient priorities.”

Newfoundland and Labrador Support works with the healthcare authorities and the provincial government to recommend changes in the healthcare system in a way that reflects what patients want to see.

Anne Griffin, director of the genomic hearing research center, is helping facilitate the event in Grand Falls-Windsor.

“I’m really interested in people stepping up and having a say about what kinds of health issues and what kinds of priorities are important to them,” she told the Advertiser. “So, I’d really like to see the community take advantage of the opportunity to talk to people that are specifically trying to make connections from the viewpoint of all of us that have health issues to the people that actually work on solutions and new discoveries.”

This session is about making health research more patient-oriented and directing the way that the health care system changes.

“If there’s something you want to see changed in the healthcare system, come along and tell us – this is the best opportunity you’re going to have short of showing up in front of the confederation and yelling at the health minister,” said Humphrey.



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