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Announcement on the continuation of health care for Ukrainian refugees to come soon

Apr 10, 2024 | Canada, Featured

Alberta Health Minister Adriana LaGrange

NP-UN Western Bureau.

An announcement regarding the continuation of health care for Ukrainian refugees from Russia’s genocidal war will be coming soon, says Alberta Health Minister Adriana LaGrange.

“We know that there are many Ukrainians that have come to Alberta and made it their home and that this is a very good program that helps them get started, especially as they have gone through such a trying time. So I believe there will be an announcement on this very soon. I can’t pre-empt that announcement, but I understand the challenges and I look forward to sharing some more information with you very soon,” she said during a virtual roundtable with the multicultural media, April 4.

She was responding to a question from NP-UN Western Bureau Chief Marco Levytsky who thanked the Minister for extending the basic health care benefits for Ukrainian refugees here under the CUAET program and asked how long that will be in place?

He also noted that extended health care for Ukrainian refugees here under the CUAET program will run out on April 30 and asked whether it will be extended beyond this deadline.

Ukrainian Echo representative Lidia Wasylyn asked whether Alberta Health Services “will financially support a medical exchange program for Ukrainian medical staff, such as nurses, doctors, etc. similar to the medical-educational exchange programs organized a few years ago by McEwan University, where Canadian nurses worked and trained in Ukraine while Ukrainian nurses came to Edmonton to study and learn Canadian techniques.”
LaGrande replied she wasn’t sure whether that fell under her department or that of Advanced Education but said she would look into it.

“We’re always open to opportunities to have our students and our medical graduates go abroad and vice versa but we want to make sure that they’re safe and also that there’s a need to do that so I’m open to that and I have a very good relationship with Minister Sawhney, who’s Minister of Advanced Education, and I’ll be happy to take that to her as well as an opportunity to discuss further,” she said.

Wasylyn also asked that “given that April is World Autism Month, what steps is your department taking to support the needs of Ukrainian newcomer families with autistic children or other special needs children who currently residing in Alberta so that they get the timely and important care or interventions they need to treat their challenges?”

“On the World Autism Month, yes you’re absolutely right. Autism prevalence certainly has grown or at least the diagnosis of it has grown. I can share that as the former Minister of Education for K to 12, our schools do have very good programs to work with autistic children. I also know that just recently… a new independent school specializing in working with autistic children just opened up… in Edmonton so I would encourage you to look into that.”

“From a health perspective we do have expertise in this area and so it’s a matter of finding the right professionals who can deal with the different aspects because there is of course there’s different levels of the spectrum and so we want to make sure that they get the right diagnosis, the right help and the right support while they’re here. But I’m happy to say that we have provided very comprehensive health care to Ukrainian evacuees that have come and so I’m very proud of the work. I know that many of them have availed themselves of the health programs as well as mental health programs that they can tap into but also the dental programs have been very popular as well,” she said.

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