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Emergency Department

What is Population Health & Wellness?

Population Health and Wellness involves working to improve the health of a population, which includes identifying and taking action to reduce health inequities arising within the determinants of health between and among groups within the population.

Did you know Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) has a Population Health and Wellness Committee?

Neil Ives, Nancy McPherson & Ashley Vandepoele at the Human Rights Museum during Health Care Excellence Canada’s Joint Programs Workshop

As Population Health and Wellness is so broad in scope, the committee sought a specific population area to work toward effecting change. With Manitoba having one of the highest rates of kidney disease in Canada, our team’s specific focus and priority area is kidney health.

In recent years, this committee has explored the services being provided along a person’s kidney health journey, from testing to, in some cases, dialysis. Thanks to the assistance of some Brandon University nursing students, an interview was conducted with all people on dialysis residing in PMH in 2022. Chronic Disease Education Program and Dialysis staff were also surveyed, and a common theme arose among staff – a wish that they would have seen people sooner along their care continuum. With this in mind, and knowing that kidney disease can be hard to detect in that it often starts slowly and can develop without any symptoms, the team looked at various ways to screen people in various settings and how that could be operationalized. Our initial efforts did not come to fruition, but they planted the seeds for our next steps. Most recently, we applied for grant funding through Health Care Excellence Canada’s Strengthening Primary Care in Northern, Rural, and Remote Communities program and were successful! Funding will be used to purchase point-of-care testing equipment to support diabetes and renal screening, meaning clients will receive their results and begin developing a renal health plan on the spot. We partnered with the Chronic Disease Innovation Centre at Seven Oaks General Hospital in Winnipeg to help us guide the development and implementation of this project.

We want to empower community members to protect their kidneys and inform them of the importance of early detection!

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