Lake of the Woods District Hospital is in transition, as president and CEO Mark Balcaen enters retirement. Earlier this week, he talked about improvements he's seen over the last 25 years in health care in the northwest.

"Certainly, there have been a lot of changes -- very positive changes -- over the 25 years. Not to say we haven't run into our own hiccups and issues and problems," he said.

Balcaen had worked for five years in Sioux Lookout, before moving to Kenora.

The board is in the process of selecting a replacement. An important task facing the board moving forward will be implementing the recommendations from a recent operational review.

Balcaen adds there's some good news for patient care is on its way, with hip replacement surgeries on the list of procedures to be performed in Kenora.

"It should happen in the fall. It's coming very, very quickly," he said.

Balcaen noted renovations on the hospital's operating rooms and staff training will need to be completed, before the procedures can be done locally.

He also sees more integration and coordination of services in the future, as governments at all levels look for ways to improve health care services without adding costs.

The board is in the process of selecting a replacement. An important task facing the board moving forward will be implementing the recommendations from a recent operational review.

For more information:

Doctors talk health care reforms

Changes needed at Kenora's hospital, report

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