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HomeNewsWhitestone Nurse Practitioner-Led clinic expansion complete, new program in the works

Whitestone Nurse Practitioner-Led clinic expansion complete, new program in the works

The Whitestone Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic (NPLC), one of six in our region, is now 1000 square feet bigger. 

Theresa Wetselaar, Nurse Practitioner (NP) at the Whitestone station and lead for all six locations, says the new space comes with four additional exam rooms.  

“It enabled us to convert one of the older rooms into a storage room, which helps us better manage stock and supplies. [As well], we [now] have a lab room and a research room. We [now also] have a full basement that [works] as a one-bedroom apartment that will help us when we have student NPs or NPs that come to the area that need housing,” she says. 

Wetselaar says the expansion cost $917,994. She says the community raised over $90,000 which was then matched by an anonymous donor pushing the total amount fundraised to over $200,000.

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Wetselaar says the remaining amount was covered by a $486,396 provincial grant, some donations from the municipality, as well as some leftover funds from previous fundraisers. Community donations included, but were limited to, a senior friendly examination table donated by the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 394. 

“This has been many years in the making. It started five years ago and with the community support from the municipalities in the area and the WPSHC and the NPLC.We all came together and made this happen. We got some nice community support in terms of fundraising as well as their time and effort,” she says. 

Wetselaar says the Whitestone location started out nearly five years ago with just one nurse practitioner, a receptionist and a visiting physician.  

“We are now multiple nurse practitioners working here. We have a full-time social worker who comes in once a week. We also have a physiotherapist and an RPN. We’re hoping to connect more with the community,. What we’re doing is connecting with social services to help people who are vulnerable and need help in the community,” she says. 

Wetselaar says the clinic also helps with home and community care by providing some nursing support in the form of clinic dressing changes. In addition, she says a new program is in the works, which aims to help older adults in the community.  

“It’s a community enhanced geriatric team and it involves the nurse practitioners in all six sites of the NPLC as well as a social worker. We have a physiotherapist, their assistant and we are hoping to have an occupational therapist,” she says. 

In addition, WPSHC CEO Donald Sanderson says the treatments and care provided by Nurse Practitioners in our region have expanded significantly, as has the size of the Allied Health Care Team. 

Sanderson says the six nursing stations are now able to offer services ranging from physiotherapy and counselling to psychotherapy and mental health/addictions programs. 

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