Improving access to surgical services in the Restigouche region

Campbellton, Monday, April 1, 2019 – Vitalité Health Network is pleased to inform the population of Restigouche that cataract surgery is once again offered at the Campbellton Regional Hospital.

For just over a year, patients from the region had to travel to Bathurst for cataract surgery because of a lack of specialists providing this service at the Campbellton Regional Hospital. Therefore, this is great news for the Restigouche. “We are proud of having been able to restore this service in Campbellton,” stated Gilles Lanteigne, President and CEO of the Network. “Having this service back will mean shorter waiting times for patients, being able to provide services within the prescribed timeframe and optimizing the use of existing facilities at the Campbellton Regional Hospital,” added the President and CEO. “In an environment where we need to provide services to an aging population, this development is extremely positive.”

The service was restored thanks to the collaboration of the Chaleur Regional Hospital’s medical staff. A specialist from Bathurst now travels to Campbellton to operate patients. “The first surgical procedures were performed last week, and everything went really well,” indicated Dr. Natalie Banville, Medical Director for Vitalité Health Network’s surgical sector. “This is a good example of collaboration and the benefits of a service network approach. For surgical services, this demonstrates the benefits of our regional structure, which promotes teamwork and resource sharing,” she added. “In the end, it is our patients that benefit the most from this,” she concluded.

Initially, approximately 30 cataract surgeries will be performed in Campbellton each month. Based on demand, and if we do get a second ophthalmologist to participate, this number could rise to 70 procedures each month within a year.

The Network also sees the return of this service in the Restigouche as a medical recruitment opportunity. “This could help us recruit an ophthalmologist who could settle in Campbellton and work in collaboration with colleagues from Bathurst,” stated Mr. Lanteigne.