NNSL Photo/Graphic

Canadian North

Home page text size buttonsbigger textsmall textText size Email this articleE-mail this page

Healthy improvement on the Bay
Naujaat officially opens new health centre

Darrell Greer
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Poor weather conditions that kept a number of dignitaries from landing in Repulse Bay for the grand opening of the new health centre did nothing to dull the community's enthusiasm for the facility.

NNSL photo/graphic

Residents of Repulse Bay eat a traditional feast as part of the grand-opening celebrations for the community's new health centre earlier this month. - photo courtesy of Karen Yip

A large crowd came out to enjoy a feast, listen to a few speeches, and get a good look at the new state-of-the-art, multimillion-dollar facility.

Naujaat Mayor Hugh Haqpi said the grand opening was a proud day for the people of Repulse Bay.

He said the new facility has been a long time coming and the community was excited to see its doors finally open.

"The old health centre was built here somewhere around the 1970s, I believe, and was very badly outdated," said Haqpi.

"Everyone was so happy when construction really got going a few years ago and now we have this beautiful modern facility."

Haqpi said the building is nicely designed, with offices for mental health and social service workers, as well as a radiology department and a two-bay garage.

He said its combination of beauty and functionality is impressive.

"It's a modern design and it's nice to see all that new equipment inside.

"It's good to know our medical personnel now have all these resources for people in need of care.

"A modern building like this makes people feel more confident about the health services in their community.

"You feel more connected when you see so much of the equipment, in radiology for example, all computerized with SD cards or whatever, and that makes you feel more comfortable."

Haqpi said the community is enthusiastic about the new facility, but it will take awhile to become familiar, and comfortable, with the building and its new equipment.

He said while only time will tell how it all works out, the new facility is a big step up from the old health centre.

"It's a boost for this small community to have such a modern facility for a health centre here.

"It was designed, I believe, with the concept of how much better a nurse or a doctor can do their work with everything under one roof.

"We have to wait and see how everything goes, but we're enthusiastic about it and happy the municipality now has the lease to it."

Haqpi said the next item on his mayor's wish list is to improve the local airport.

He said, ideally, he'd like to see a brand-new airport built for the community.

"Either a new airport maybe located further from the community or, at least, improved infrastructure to what we have now, is my goal for the rest of my term as mayor.

"We have flights six days a week now, but we don't have jet service and the planes are small to mid-sized.

"If we had a better airport, it would be a boost to the community in terms of exploration coming here and, possibly, we'd see more departments doing different things in our community.

"We have a lot to offer as a community, and better infrastructure would make it easier for people to come here and realize that."

E-mailWe welcome your opinions. Click here to e-mail a letter to the editor.