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Alberta's First: Superstore Opens Pharmacist-led Clinic in Lethbridge

Lethbridge's Real Canadian Superstore is home to Alberta's first walk-in health clinic, led by a pharmacist.

The clinic is set to start welcoming patients on Mondays.

Loblaw Companies Ltd. and the University of Alberta have partnered to open a pharmacist walk-in clinic on the second floor of the retailer's only Lethbridge location.

According to Jeff Leger, Loblaw's pharmacy director and president of Shoppers Drug Mart, the expanded range of pharmacists in Alberta can provide the same care that is offered in regular clinics. It came to be.

Read more:The town of Fort Macleod, where incentives want to fill the doctor shortage in Alberta

"Pharmacists are in their own position. It eases some of the burden on the state's health care system, and this innovative clinic makes it easier for Lethbridge residents to access health care," Leger said. Mr. says.

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"In the pharmacy world, consciousness is () a challenging part," said clinic manager and pharmacist Justin Jensen. Said.

"We need to broaden our awareness of what Alberta pharmacists can do and how far they can actually go."

Alberta pharmacists cannot provide emergency care, but patient assessments You can perform a variety of health-related tasks, such as prescribing medications for mild illnesses and injuries.

"Examples are coughs, colds, (sore throats)," Jensen said. "It can cause urinary tract infections. It can cause muscle and joint pain."

Similarly, pharmacists order and receive test results to help manage chronic illnesses. And you can administer the medication by injection.

The new clinic was established with the aim of providing pharmacists with space to do these things while reducing travel to the emergency room.

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Health Minister Jason Copping said this is the difficulty many Alberta faces when accessing primary care. Said that it is only part of dealing with.

Lethbridgeplans to add 11 more doctors by the end of the year, but currently more than an estimated 33,000 have no family doctors.

"This is a problem with Lethbridge, and frankly, it's a problem across the state and across the country," Copping said. "But one thing I've heard from medical professionals is that it's very important, not just your doctor. It's about the entire medical team.

The Pharmacist-led Clinic Initiative is a pilot program that will be evaluated over the next 6-12 months.

"Because it's a clinic in the space we owned, we have a long pilot here. It's very easy to really understand what works in the rest of the state, "said Leger.

Loblaw has provided the University of Arizona with a $ 500,000 grant to help researchers evaluate clinics and provide training and care to students in the field.

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