New health co-op should open in spring
on the project. Workshops on health topics such as blood pressure and nutrition will also take place at the centre. “Our main goal is prevention of disease and health problems,” said Ms. Mooney.
One doctor from the area has already been found to work one day a week at the clinic but a second is needed. “We have two other doctors coming to take a look at the clinic in the next two weeks.” Two nurses and a receptionist have also been found.
Over seven hundred and fifty people have become members of the much anticipated clinic, most coming from Ayer’s Cliff and the neighbouring municipalities. In fact, anyone can become a member, regardless of where they live. “I want to stress that it is a public health cooperative. Even though we have members, if someone were to come to the clinic with an emergency situation, our doctor would see them. Our doctors will still be working under the Canada Health Act,” Ms. Mooney explained.
Presently, there are about forty health cooperatives in Quebec, the closest being in Eastman. “They are usually located in rural areas where there can be a shortage of doctors. One opened in Roxton Pond in 2009 and it now has 4,800 members and a thousand on a waiting list. They are very popular and are relieving the emergency rooms in nearby hospitals,” said Ms. Mooney.
The health centre got a big boost to its fundraising campaign last week with the announcement of a grant of $45,000 from the two local Caisses es ardins, erts Sommets and Lac Memphremagog. “We’ll get $25,000 the first year and then the rest of the money in the following two years to help us with our start-up costs. We really appreciate all the support from the community. We have received donations from individuals, Ayer’s Cliff companies, and the Memphremagog CLD gave us $25,000. We still have to buy examination tables, diagnostic kits, and we plan to go with an electronic record-keeping system. That will be costly,” said Ms. Mooney. Tax receipts can be issued to anyone making a donation.
For more information or to become a member you can visit the website at www.csvm.ca or call 819 838-1082 and leave a message.