It is understandable residents of The Village were concerned about potential parking issues if a redesignation application for a proposed holistic health centre were approved. Parking in residential areas can be a struggle and the knee-jerk reaction that this facility would limit parking options is a real concern for residents.
Though the redesignation was ultimately refused, we hope the applicant doesn’t see it as a sign Airdrie does not want the facility in the community.
On the contrary, both councillors and those who spoke in opposition said the health centre would be a welcome addition to the city, they just had concerns about its proposed location.
The applicant indicated the facility would include a birth centre is welcome news. Currently, expectant mothers in Airdrie who are not planning a home birth have to travel outside of the city to deliver.
A local birthing option would not only provide convenience, but it could also create healthcare savings. According to a 2016 report on the state of maternity care in Alberta, out-of-hospital births with a midwife offer a savings of $2,055 per birth when compared to maternity care with an OBGYN.
Additionally, according to a 2013 report from the Association of Safe Alternatives for Childbirth, just 12 per cent of midwifery clients in Alberta delivered by c-section, compared to nearly 29 per cent of overall c-section rates in the province.
We strongly hope the development of this health centre continues and can provide more options for care in the city.