Until recently, about 300 Yorkton-area clients with cardiac device implants needed to travel to Regina as many as four times a year – driving a four-hour round trip – for check-ups at the Group Medical Services (GMS) Cardiac Rhythm Device Clinic at Regina General Hospital.
Their lives changed for the better in March when Yorkton Regional Health Centre’s lab began offering this service.
Norm Grayston, lab client (foreground), with Saskatchewan Health Authority and Medtronic of Canada staff in Yorkton.
“This is saving me a lot of day trips to Regina every year,” said Norm Grayston, the first client with a loop recorder to have monitoring done at the Yorkton lab. Previously, he said, taking a day out of his busy schedule for a 20-minute check-up in Regina meant money out of his pocket.
Now, Grayston and other clients with cardiac devices, such as pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators, undergo tests at the Yorkton lab. The information is then sent to the GMS Cardiac Rhythm Device Clinic where it is interpreted by trained staff and physicians.
Naomi Cawley and Brynn Worobetz, Yorkton cardiology technologists, worked with Steven Klotz, manager of Saskatchewan Health Authority’s (SHA’s) Interventional Cardiology and Cardiac Support Services in Regina, to equip the Yorkton lab.
“Yorkton is the first location in the province to take this on,” said Danielle Bellamy, manager of Laboratory Services for the SHA in Yorkton. “I am very proud of our cardiology technologists and their dedication to providing patient first, quality care.”
This is the first rollout of this kind to a satellite clinic, so monitoring outcomes is key. “Data from the clinic, including patient feedback and other analysis, is ongoing,” said Klotz. “If all goes well, we hope to
expand the service to other locations.”