Mountain View Seniors' Housing (MVSH), which owns and operates seniors' facilities across the region, has given notice that it will be terminating the Alberta Health Services contracts for all its sites in 12 months' time.
The contracts are currently for health-care delivery at Didsbury, Olds and Sundre.
“We (MVSH) are a third-party provider on behalf of Alberta Health,” CAO Sam Smalldon told the Gazette Monday. “We are saying to Alberta Health that we wish for you to take this back. AHS can choose to have another third party or themselves, but that’s their choice.”
In a press release issued April 8, MVSH expanded on the decision to terminate the contracts.
“The board will continue to work with AHS to make a smooth transition for all involved,” he said. “The board wishes to emphasize its continuing commitment to our lodge residents for the long term, as well as providing high-quality health care during the transition.
The move to terminate followed board discussions, including some held last week, he said.
“AHS funding has been inadequate to provide the level of quality care MVSH believes in, requiring ongoing support through municipal requisitions,” he said.
“The board has discussed and questioned involvement in delivery of health care for a number of years. The board contends health care is a provincial and AHS responsibility, not municipal taxpayers'.”
Meanwhile the board has received and reviewed the recent mediator's report and recommendations from the enhanced mediation process.
“Although the board does not agree with many of the recommendations, especially some having a potential negative impact on operations and the ability to maintain quality care and services for residents, the board has accepted the mediator report and recommendations for staff at the Sundre Seniors’ Supportive Living site,” he said.
“A top priority for the board is to maintain good relations and support for our staff in delivery of care and services for our residents.
“The board continues to work for wage and benefit parity for all our staff and is also striving to maintain fairness and equity amongst our staff.”
The board will continue to work with the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees to finalize and implement the first collective bargaining agreement for Sundre staff, he said.
Smalldon was scheduled to have a telephone meeting with AHS officials on Monday afternoon, he said.