Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
Search in posts
Search in pages

Emergency Department

Nurse Practitioners recruited to PMH Region

Primary health-care providers to begin taking appointments in early June

Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) is pleased to announce that three new Nurse Practitioners (NPs/Grad NPs) will soon begin seeing patients and clients within the communities of Carberry, Swan River and Virden. PMH CEO Brian Schoonbaert says recruitment and retention of health-care professionals remains a top priority for the health region and the Province, and growing the NP program within the region continues to see positive results.

Grad NP Jenny Ives will see clients at the Swan Valley Primary Care Centre

“Along with our health partners and stakeholders, which include our communities, we continue to look for ways to support, recruit and retain healthcare staff within PMH.  By having NPs provide services from base locations across our region, we can maintain the provision of primary care closer to home,” Schoonbaert said.

Upon receiving their full designation, Nurse Practitioners work independently and can provide many services, including:

  • Completing assessments and physical exams, including pap tests and pre-natal exams;
  • Diagnosing and managing common issues and chronic conditions;
  • Prescribing medications and therapies;
  • Ordering diagnostic tests like blood work, x-rays, ultrasounds, CT scans and MRIs;
  • Performing minor procedures like suturing, biopsies, wart and mole removal; and
  • Referring to other health providers, including specialists.

During the first week of June, Nurse Practitioner Vicky Irwin will see clients at the Virden Medical Clinic and in Swan River, Grad NP Jenny Ives will see clients at the Swan Valley Primary Care Centre. In Carberry, Grad NP Robin Catton will begin seeing clients at the Carberry Medical Clinic, effective June 12. To make an appointment with the new NPs, contact the community clinic/site, or find out more information through the PMH website or social media.

As of June 2023, the region will have 26 NPs providing service within 27 PMH communities, nine of which are First Nation communities. NP services are provided at medical clinics, 7th Street Health Access Centre in Brandon, the Brandon Emergency Department, Souris acute care, First Nation Health offices, multiple long-term care sites, and the PMH Mobile Clinic (primary care bus).

Read More

When passion meets opportunity.

By Alexandra Wenger, Winnipeg Free Press

As a rural nurse, you’re so much more than your job title. There’s a certain kind of flexibility in rural nursing that allows you to develop your skills in different ways.

Chandel Bailey-Morrison

When Chandel Bailey-Morrison’s kindergarten teacher asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, Chandel already knew her answer. She wanted to become a nurse.

“I always knew nursing was my calling,” Bailey-Morrison said. “As a kid I was always helping people. To this day, when I care for people, it reminds me of my purpose on this earth and it makes me feel whole.”

Bailey-Morrison’s health-care career started early, with those kindergarten dreams, and continued on into high school when she became a health-care aide and worked in both hospice and palliative care environments.

“Palliative care was the most rewarding job I’ve ever had. It’s such an honour to care for people in their final stages of life,” she said. “I have some truly heartwarming memories, including a patient who asked me to give her a bath while listening to Louis Armstrong’s ‘What a Wonderful World.’ She got me to dance around the room singing at the top of my lungs. We laughed until we cried. It was the best day — and literally her very last day on earth.”

Originally published in the Winnipeg Free Press as part of a National Nursing Week special feature

Her goal of becoming a nurse was realized when Bailey-Morrison graduated with a nursing degree in 2014. From a dream planned out and pursued from the early age of five, Bailey-Morrison’s career path has taken her to some unexpected places, including to Dauphin, where she is care team manager at the Dauphin Regional Health Centre (DRHC).

“While I was in college, I met the love of my life,” Bailey-Morrison explained. “She was in school for paramedicine and when she got a job in Dauphin, I took the leap with her. We were engaged nine months later.”

Together, the couple started their new careers in Dauphin with the intention of staying for two years to gain experience before returning to Winnipeg. Years later, they haven’t left and no longer have plans to.

“I never thought I’d live outside the city borders far from family. At first, Dauphin was a big culture shock and rural medicine had a significant learning curve,” Bailey-Morrison said. “Out here, our scope is a bit broader so I’ve had more opportunities than I would have in the city. Where Winnipeg sites might have specific IV or code teams, here in Dauphin we are those teams.”

During her five years working at the DRHC, Bailey-Morrison has explored many different opportunities and worked in a variety of specialties, including medicine, surgery and maternity while using her experience to help both new and existing staff expand their education in her current leadership role.      

“As a rural nurse, you’re so much more than your job title. There’s a certain kind of flexibility in rural nursing that allows you to develop your skills in different ways. You have the ability to jump in and get orientated on different units and if you show interest and want to learn, you can try it,” she added. “All your career goals can be made possible here. There’s just so much room to grow.”

As care team manager, Bailey-Morrison is responsible for half the Dauphin facility, including three of its largest units, overseeing everything from staffing, hiring, recruitment, finances and budgeting to patient safety and operations.

“I’ve been given great opportunities to climb the ladder in my career. I think my journey would have looked a lot different if I had stayed in Winnipeg,” Bailey-Morrison said, crediting the mentors she had along the way for inspiring both her interest in leadership and her approach to her current role.

“When I was a health-care aide, Monika Warren (now chief nursing officer for Shared Health) was one of the people who encouraged me to become a nurse. I’ve always said if I was ever in a leadership role, I would want to be like her. The way she speaks to people and her calmness during crisis is just so remarkable. It really stuck with me and inspires me to this day to be a great leader.”

These days, Bailey-Morrison’s everyday tasks are quite different from those she was responsible for in a direct care nursing role, but she has found her calling in leadership and is known around the facility for her commitment to staff, ability to bring teams together to succeed and willingness to be an extra set of hands whenever they are needed.

While Dauphin wasn’t in the original kindergarten dreams, it has become home for Bailey-Morrison and her family, offering small-town charm and big opportunities.

“Living in rural Manitoba offers the best of both worlds. Dauphin is beautiful and economical, my commute is convenient, and there are tons of outdoor activities and a diverse and supportive community. My definition of family has changed, and it’s here. Dauphin is home.”

This article was originally published in the Winnipeg Free Press as part of a National Nursing Week special feature. Click here for the full feature to read about more nurses and their careers throughout Manitoba.

Read More


Prairie Mountain Health was excited to learn of the province’s investment in a one-time, 25-student cohort for its practical nursing diploma program in Neepawa. The Manitoba government is providing $2.1 million in combined capital and operating funding to Assiniboine Community College (ACC) to offer the practical nursing program in Neepawa.

Advanced Education and Training Minister Sarah Guillemard and Health Minister Audrey Gordon say the one-time offering in Neepawa will provide students with training close to home, allowing them to study, work and strengthen health care in the region.

“Nurses from rural communities are more likely to stay or return to rural health settings and graduates of this program will be eligible to fill positions at the new hospital under construction in Neepawa scheduled for completion in 2025, “ Gordon stated.

“We are pleased to be able to contribute to training people for careers in health care throughout the province. Nursing is Assiniboine’s largest single program and our graduates have a track record of getting jobs and staying in Manitoba.” said Mark Frison, president, ACC. “This welcome investment by the Manitoba government allows us to respond to needs in Neepawa and we look forward to working with the community to expand access in this growing region of the province.”

At nearly four times the size of the existing Neepawa Health Centre, the new hospital will include:

  • 63 acute care inpatient beds, an increase from 38 at the current site;
  • an expanded emergency department designed to best practice standards that includes assessment and treatment rooms, a trauma room, stretcher bay and ambulance bay; and
  • enhanced space for a number of programs such as surgery, diagnostics and palliative care, as well as various outpatient services including chemotherapy, ambulatory care and an eight-station dialysis unit.

Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) CEO Brian Schoonbaert says the region continues collaborative efforts with the province and education institutions like Assiniboine to further strengthen the health-care workforce in the region.

“Training nurses close to home allows them to learn in a familiar environment and have the opportunity to learn about and apply for jobs in their community upon graduation,” said Brian Schoonbaert CEO of Prairie Mountain Health. “It also helps meet the high demand for nurses in PMH. We are pleased to work with Assiniboine and our stakeholders to offer learners in the health region this opportunity.”

The investment in Neepawa further aligns with the provincial Health Human Resource Action Plan, which launched in November 2022 with a commitment to add 2,000 health-care providers, invest $200 million to retain, train and recruit health-care staff across Manitoba, and eliminate mandated overtime.

Read More

Shoal Lake Yellowhead Clinic secures Nurse Practitioner services

Nurse Practitioner (NP) Cathy Scofield-Singh

The Yellowhead Community Clinic in Shoal Lake welcomes Nurse Practitioner (NP) Cathy Scofield-Singh, who will begin seeing patients on March 13. Scofield-Singh will be joining the Shoal Lake Medical Team on a permanent basis. Cathy will also provide coverage to the personal care home while NP Tanya Radford is on maternity leave. Once Tanya returns from maternity leave, the two NPs will work in Shoal Lake.

The Clinic will also be served by Hamiota physician Dr. Chris Brenneman, who will work some itinerant shifts starting in May to continue to provide services to Shoal Lake and area residents. Dr. Heather Gooden, who practices full-time in Hamiota, will remain to oversee patients within the Shoal Lake Transitional Care Unit.

Nurse Practitioners work independently and can provide many services, including:

  • Completing assessments and physical exams, including pap tests and pre-natal exams;
  • Diagnosing and managing common issues and chronic conditions;
  • Prescribing medications and therapies;
  • Ordering diagnostic tests like blood work, x-rays, ultrasounds, CT scans and MRIs;
  • Performing minor procedures like suturing, biopsies, wart and mole removal; and
  • Referring to other health providers, including specialists.

Schofield-Singh comes to the Shoal Lake Clinic after working at the Ste. Rose Primary Health Care Centre, where she started with Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) in 2018.
Cathy did a short locum in Shoal Lake in the fall of 2022, and the clinic staff and board were so happy with her services they approached her about a move to Shoal Lake. This worked for Cathy personally, so it is a positive move for both the community and Cathy. She will be a welcomed addition to the medical services team in Shoal Lake.

Yellowhead Clinic, Shoal Lake

As an NP since 2013, Cathy has over 30 years of experience as a Registered Nurse (RN) with a diverse nursing career. She graduated from the University of Manitoba’s Masters of Nursing NP program in October 2013. Before becoming an NP, she also had an opportunity to work in remote northern communities as a Primary Care Nurse for over ten years.

PMH Primary Health Care Manager Diane Ciprick says the Region was pleased to facilitate conversations with Scofield-Singh, allowing her to move into the opportunity in Shoal Lake.
The health region continues to be very active in Nurse Practitioner recruitment and retention efforts. To date, 23 NPs provide service within 27 communities, which include shifts on the Mobile Clinic, services at medical clinics and in the 7th Street Health Access Centre.

Read More

CAREER SPOTLIGHT: Health Information Services

The Health Information Services (HIS) team includes Health Information Management Professionals, Medical Transcriptionists and Clerical staff who work in health centres throughout Prairie Mountain Health. This team is about managing healthcare data; collecting, storing, managing and transmitting a patient’s electronic medical records (EMR) in a professional, caring, and confidential manner.

Clerical Staff (Clerk III)

Clerk IIIs work in various areas within the HIS program, such as patient registration, switchboard and the records processing unit. The Clerk III Health Information staff are responsible for accurate and timely registration and processing of the admission/discharge/transfer (ADT) system while following the Provincial and Regional Registration Guidelines and practices. In addition, they process records, including secure storage, maintain the confidentiality of health information, and ensure all records are complete and accurate. This position also supports communication within and outside the facility. The switchboard is the communication hub of the facilities. In this area, they receive patient inquiries, page/communicate with health care providers, and operate the call centre for all Emergency codes within the facilities.

Education Requirements: Clerical staff in HIS are required to have a certificate in Medical Terminology. The Canadian Red Cross and Red River College offer Medical Terminology certificate programs.

Medical Transcriptionists

Medical Transcription changes voice-recorded reports into written texts that become a part of the permanent health record. Physicians and other health care providers dictate information gathered during patient encounters, and medical transcriptionists listen to the recording and transcribe it. These medical reports include clinical findings and therapeutic procedures in the health record and transmission to physicians and other healthcare facilities.

Education Requirements: All Medical Transcriptionists graduate from a recognized Medical Transcription Program. Check out Canscribe Career College or the Academy of Learning College offers the Medical Transcription certificate program as well as Medical Office Assistant (both needed if attending Academy of Learning College).

Health Information Management Professionals (HIMP)

Health Information Management Professionals provide services in all aspects of health records management. This includes data collection, disclosure, retention and the proper disposal of health information. The HIMP codes and summarizes all inpatient and same-day care health records accurately and efficiently. This is done by following the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) Standards and utilizing the appropriate Coding Classification System. This health data is transformed into information that can be analyzed and used to help in healthcare delivery, patient safety, and decision-making.

Education Requirements: All Health Information Management Professionals are graduates of a Health Information Management Professional Program and can be certified with the Canadian Health Information Management Association (CHIMA). The Canadian HealthCare Association (CHA Learning – online) or Red River College offers the Health Information Management Professional certificate program.

All of the functions within HIS are tied together with our Administrative Assistants and our Management team. The Health Information Services portfolio offers plenty of room for growth and career advancement and is currently recruiting for positions within our team!

Visit our Prairie Mountain Health careers page at

Read More

PMH organizes health care students tour as part of recruitment activities

If Willie Nelson’s “On the road again” wasn’t blaring, it should have been! Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) hosted a rural bus tour for health-care students January 21-22 and the weekend initiative drew great reviews. PMH Recruitment Supervisor Larissa Kominko says nine students took advantage of the opportunity to visit several communities and facilities in the health region and came away with a better appreciation of the numerous advantages of working and living in rural Manitoba.

“Spending time and making connections with the students was so rewarding,” Kominko said. “Being able to showcase the amazing lifestyle of rural Manitoba, the hospitality of small towns and all the programs and services that our local hospitals and personal care homes have to offer was amazing. I think it is fair to say that all involved made a very good impression, as students were extremely overwhelmed and excited about all they saw and heard over the two days.“

This year, health-care students from both the University of Manitoba and Brandon University were part of the two-day tour, with site visits to Dauphin Regional Health Centre, St. Paul’s PCH, Grandview Health Centre, Roblin Health Centre/PCH, and Russell Health Centre. During the road trip, information was also shared about communities the bus travelled through, which included Gilbert Plains, Neepawa, Minnedosa, Shoal Lake and Rossburn.

Planned activities at Asessippi Ski Resort (between Roblin and Russell), and Northgate Trails, located in Riding Mountain National Park, provided participants with a chance to get some exercise and have some fun!

Some comments from participants included:

“Thanks for the opportunity to explore rural communities and future potential careers. I didn’t realize it, but I really needed to get outside of the city.”

“I genuinely had an amazing time this weekend. Thank you so much!”

“Thanks to everyone who organized the trip. It was a really great experience seeing all of the communities. I definitely have a lot to think about!”

Kominko says the tour built upon a similar initiative that was organized in 2019, before the COVID pandemic surfaced. She adds, the region is always evaluating and improving upon the various strategies it undertakes in regards to recruitment and retention initiatives. She stated plans are already in the works to hold a smiliar event in another part of the geographically large health region.

Read More

Medical students gather in Brandon as part of rural interest group

In partnership with the Manitoba Health Care Providers Network (MHCPN) and Max Rady College of Medicine, Faculty of Sciences, Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) hosted the University of Manitoba medical student Rural Interest Group in Brandon on January 27-28, 2023. The Rural Interest Group (RIG) weekend highlighted the benefits of practicing medicine in rural communities and available lifestyle opportunities. Some 34 first and second-year medical students took part.

PMH continues to be a strong advocate for the initiative as it provides the health region with additional opportunities to engage medical students early in their training. Clinical workstations were set up at Brandon Regional Health Centre that allowed students to put their skills to the test by undertaking tasks like suturing, casting and airway management.

Student RIG Co-President Sydney McLaughlin says after a brief event pause, due to the state of the COVID-19 pandemic, all of the students learned a lot and had great fun at the same time.

“The weekend went really well and I am really happy with how things went!” McLaughlin stated.
“On behalf of both the Rural Interest Group and the University of Manitoba Medical Classes of 2025 and 2026, I would like to extend a huge thank you to PMH for welcoming us back this year. These events are so important for our education as they expose students to what it is like to work in rural medicine, provide opportunities for students to network with doctors and residents, and give us an idea of what it is like to work within the health region.”

Both MHCPN and PMH sincerely appreciate the support of regional physicians, staff and volunteers who help make the RIG weekend a success.

Sydney McLaughlin, Student RIG Co-President
Medical Students participate in a clinical casting workshop
Medical students have some down time to try out their painting skills.
Read More

Two new Physician Assistants recruited to Swan River

Physician Assistants (PAs) are healthcare professionals who practice medicine under the supervision of a physician. They complement existing services and aid in improving patient access. Recently, National Physician Assistant (PA) day was recognized. Prairie Mountain Health also acknowledges and says “thank you” to its Physician Assistants who work in our region and are based in Brandon, Dauphin and Swan River. PMH continues recruiting for these professionals with the recent addition of two new Physician Assistants in Swan River. Even more exciting is that one of the new PAs, Charnae Betcher, a Swan River resident, is returning to her home community to work.

Charnae Betcher
Physician Assistant

Betcher graduated with a Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) from the University of Manitoba (UM) in October. Based out of the department of family medicine, Max Rady College of Medicine, the UM MPAS program has recently started its 15th year. Of the three PA programs in Canada, UM is the only one to offer the program at a master’s level. MPAS is a highly competitive program, with over 150 applicants vying for just 15 spots. Beginning in early December, Charnae will be located at the Swan Valley Primary Care Centre (SVPCC )as part of the My Health Team initiative.

“I am grateful to return to Swan River and serve the community where I grew up,” Betcher said.

“ I hope to contribute to enhancing local health care as a PA by working collaboratively to improve access to healthcare services, patient outcomes and quality of life.”

Fellow recruit James Awuah will be based at the Swan Valley Health Centre. Awuah, who started in mid-November, comes to the Region from South Dakota, USA. He currently lives in Regina, SK., with his family. He graduated from the University of South Dakota in 2018. He had been practicing emergency medicine and family medicine at critical access hospitals in North Dakota and South Dakota until he joined SVHC.

James Awuah
Physician Assistant

“I am very excited to be part of a team that continues to make a positive impact in the lives of community members,” Awuah stated.

“I am thrilled to continue to promote life and good health to the people I come across daily as a Physician Assistant. The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

Swan Valley Primary Care Centre physician Dr. Leah Koetting says health care is a team effort and Physician Assistants have a vital role.

“By working alongside physicians in hospital rounds, the clinic, and the emergency department, they ensure more patients are seen and treated in a timely manner.”

According to the Canadian Association of Physician Assistants, the introduction of PAs into the country began within the Canadian Armed Forces in the 1950s. Manitoba was the first province to introduce PAs into the healthcare system in 1999, and today, approximately 800 certified PAs are practicing in Canada—with over 500 in Ontario. As of December 2022, there will be 10 PAs practicing within PMH in Brandon, Dauphin and Swan River.

A Physician Assistant has the skills and experience to deal with medical emergencies, specialty practice environments, and everyday healthcare needs. The PA is a physician extender and not an independent practitioner; they work under the direction of supervising physicians within the client/patient-centered care team. As part of their comprehensive responsibilities, PAs can:

  • conduct physical exams, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret tests.
  • counsel on preventive health care.
  • assist in surgery, and write prescriptions.
  • Participate in education, research and provide some administrative services.

In Brandon, some PAs assist in general and specialist surgery along with areas like kidney disease and the renal unit. In Dauphin, the two PAs undertake different responsibilities —one works within the surgery program and the other within primary care.

Prairie Mountain Health CEO Brian Schoonbaert says the region continues to look at ways to increase the recruitment and retention of healthcare professionals.

“PMH has hired more Physician Assistants, Nurse Practitioners and Clinical Assistants to expand primary care availability. We continue to meet with our stakeholders and partners to review challenges and discuss potential solutions to health human resource shortages that the rest of the province and country face now.”

Schoonbaert sincerely thanks all PMH staff for their continued efforts to provide patient care during this challenging period in the healthcare system. He adds the region remains committed to exhausting all available options to address these challenges.

Read More

Nurse Practitioner hits the ground running in Souris area

Note: As part of national Nurse Practitioner Week, which takes place this year from November 13-19, PMH is pleased to introduce the newest recruit to the health region.

Hello, my name is Danielle Lewis MN RN (NP) and I am the Nurse Practitioner (NP) who recently accepted a position within Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) region at Souris Medical Associates, Souris Hospital, and Sioux Valley Health Centre.

I grew up on a cattle farm close to Melita. I enjoyed living the farm life, playing hockey, baseball, badminton and acting in community musicals. Upon my high school graduation, I moved to Winnipeg to attend University.

While working on my nursing degree, I worked as a health care aide at St. Boniface hospital on a variety of floors and Jocelyn House providing palliative care in a home setting. After graduating with my Bachelor of Nursing from the University of Manitoba, I worked as a Registered Nurse in the Intermediate Care Nursery, Children’s Acute Medicine, and Brandon Emergency Room.

I graduated from the University of Saskatchewan Master of Nursing Nurse Practitioner program in 2020 and began working at Swan Lake First Nation Health Centre. Afterwards, I joined Southern Health in the first solely NP lead model in Manitoba, which included primary care, in-patient care and enhance primary care/extended hours.

Excited to work closer to home, I came back to PMH in August of 2022. My primary site is Souris and includes clinical as well as hospital practice. I also work part-time at the Sioux Valley Health Centre. I provide care for a range of acute and chronic health concerns and conditions. In my practice, I do a lot of teaching and believe in empowering patients to understand their health and participate in their care.

In addition to being an NP, I am a wife and Mom of two boys ages 5 and 2. I continue to play hockey, baseball, enjoy camping and teach yoga. In both my practice and personal life, I believe that if you do not make time for health, you will be forced to make time for illness.

The health staff and community members have been very welcoming and supportive. I look forward to working with you all and growing my role for many years to come.

For more information on Nurse Practitioners within PMH, view the health region’s website.

Read More

Five New International Medical Graduates Recruited

Dr. Sidra Jawed | Neepawa

Physician recruitment efforts continue within Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) region. One of the initiatives the region utilizes as part of overall recruitment strategies includes the provincial Medical Licensure Program for International Medical Graduates (MLPIMG). The ‘IMG Program’ assists foreign-trained doctors in obtaining their medical license to be able to practice as a primary care (family) physician in Manitoba.

“During the past year, the region sponsored five physicians to participate in the ‘IMG’ Program,” said Brian Schoonbaert, PMH CEO. “After much consideration, doctors that successfully graduated from the program were strategically placed at various sites within PMH communities (or nearby areas) that require additional sufficient physician resources.

This year, these communities included Neepawa, Roblin, Russell, Virden and Swan River. Physicians and their start date in each community are listed below.

  • Shady Attalla Virden (started Sept. 19)
  • Dalia Bushara Roblin (started Oct. 3)
  • Samin Izadi Swan River (started Sept. 19)
  • Sidra Jawed Neepawa (started Sept. 19)
  • Dina Koreen Russell (started Sept. 19)
Dr. Samin Izadi | Swan River

In return for regional sponsorship, IMG doctors agree to practice in their respective communities for four years. The Program is supported by the University of Manitoba —Max Rady College of Medicine, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba and Manitoba Health.

Last year, five PMH-sponsored IMG physicians were placed in the communities of Killarney (2), Minnedosa, Roblin and Swan River.

“The International Medical Graduates program is an excellent example of partners coming together to provide Manitobans the care they need where and when they need it,” said Minister of Health Audrey Gordon. “The program supports physician placement in much needed rural communities throughout the province by matching them with internationally trained physicians. The province is proud to strengthen healthcare by supporting this program and delivering quality care to all Manitobans.”

During the next rotation, which is already underway, PMH is sponsoring five more IMG physicians who commenced their training program this past June. If successful, they will be able to commence practice within the health region sometime next fall (2023).

Read More
Skip to content