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Pharmacist says $150M savings in provincial budget will have negative consequences



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  • Opinion by Aileen Jang, Pharmacist

    95% of Albertans polled named pharmacists as the most accessible healthcare professional.  Year after year, pharmacists have ranked among the top 3 as the most trusted profession.  On May 17, 2018 the new pharmacy Funding Framework will come into effect and the Alberta government claims there will be a savings of $150 million dollars.

    The goal of every government is to reduce spending and cut costs.  As a taxpayer, I agree with this but only if it is done in a manner that is not harmful to its citizens.  When funding is decreased to the pharmacy, patients will ultimately be the ones to pay the price.  Wait times for filling your prescriptions; consultations on your medications and health conditions; and injection services will all increase.  The reality is that patient care will suffer when pharmacists no longer have the resources to provide the services Albertans have come to rely on.

    This past influenza campaign, pharmacists provided 51% of the vaccinations.  The reduced fee to community pharmacies for providing this service in future will decrease this number.  The result will be an increased strain to the public health clinics and physician offices ultimately resulting in added costs and strain to the healthcare system.

    In 2017, pharmacists helped over 16,000 Albertans in their attempt to quit smoking.  This service alone will save the system healthcare dollars by improving the health of our patients.

    Pharmacists provided over 500,000 Albertans with prescription renewals when they were unable to see or find a family physician.  This service allows pharmacist to work with the physician and patient to improve their health while saving the healthcare system money.

    Pharmacists are health professionals and want to provide high quality care.  However, the NDP government has signaled that patient care is not important, instead focusing solely on a budget that is largely beyond the control of pharmacists as drug costs are not set by pharmacies but by government and big pharma.  For these reasons, pharmacists are upset and demanding dialogue but have met with ignorance of the facts and empty promises to engage with us.

    by Aileen Jang, Pharmacist

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    Edmonton theatre changing workplace culture after harassment claims



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  • EDMONTON — The artistic director of an Edmonton theatre says he has learned of allegations of past harassment at the venue.

    Daryl Cloran says the Citadel Theatre is working to change its culture and policies.

    Cloran penned a public letter on the Citadel’s website saying that several people came forward with allegations after he started his job 18 months ago.

    He says he apologized and harassment and bullying will no longer be tolerated.

    Cloran told The Canadian Press that no formal complaints were made and no staff have been fired as a result of the allegations.

    He would not reveal details of the claims.

    “I can’t really share their stories,” Cloran said Tuesday.

    “But I can say that our hope is … if there are people out there that have any history or issue with the Citadel that they want to bring forward, this is going to give them the opportunity to do that.”

    The theatre has hired a consultant to implement safe disclosure for anyone who wants to voice concerns about the workplace, Cloran said.

    It is also participating in an anti-harassment program through the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association.

    Executive director Arden Ryshpan said the association welcomes the leadership Cloran has shown.

    “We hope other theatres across the country follow the example set by the Citadel Theatre as the live performance community works to end workplace harassment and bullying,” Ryshpan said in a statement.


    The Canadian Press

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    Strathcona County RCMP arrest male for child pornography offences



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  • Strathcona County, Alberta – Strathcona County RCMP with the assistance of ALERT’s Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) Unit have arrested a Sherwood Park man for child pornography offences.

    This investigation began in late August 2017 when the RCMP’s National Center for Missing and Exploited Children provided information about a Canadian using a social media account to upload and distribute child pornography.

    On March 6, 2018 Strathcona County RCMP and ICE investigators executed a search warrant at a home in Sherwood Park. Aljon PASUQUIN, age 21 was arrested without incident and charged with possessing and distributing child pornography.

    A number of computers and electronic devices were seized from the home. The seized devices will be subject to a thorough forensic examination to collect additional evidence.

    PASUQUIN was released on a recognizance and is scheduled to appear in Sherwood Park Provincial Court on March 13, 2018 at 9:30 a.m.

    While the investigation and charges are related to online offences, Strathcona County RCMP are encouraging anyone with information about this case to come forward and contact police or

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