A man from Steinbach is intensifying his efforts to try and get a kidney dialysis program going at Bethesda Regional Health Centre. Bob Barrow has been driving an elderly gentleman to Winnipeg for dialysis three times a week for the past 18 months. Along the way he has done some research.

Bob Barrow"In that year-and-a-half, I found out there are many, many patients in the southeast who are doing the same thing (as many as 137). There are a lot of patients who have been forced to move to Winnipeg because they couldn't afford the transportation costs. And, we are a fast growing community, 16,000-plus and we serve an area of 50,000 people and growing, so we definitely need a dialysis clinic here in Steinbach."

Barrow adds this is the third time he has campaigned for dialysis in Steinbach.

"The first time I was told we didn't meet the criteria. The second time I was told that we are close enough to Winnipeg and we have good roads. This third time, I've been referred to the director of the Renal Health Program. What have I heard back? Nothing, really. So that's why I'm taking this step. I'm digging up the interest."

Barrow says the province is currently reviewing its delivery of services like dialysis so now is the time to lobby our politicians to get a program in Steinbach.

"What I need is for people to contact their MLA. Kelvin Goertzen, past Health Minister, he knows the story, and also MLAs like Dennis Smook and Bob Lagasse and the Minister of Health, Cameron Friesen. The people in the southeast can very easily contact these folks and put in their concerns and their request."

Barrow has provided the following email addresses: Brian Pallister <premier@leg.gov.mb.ca>;Cameron Friesen <minhsal@leg.gov.mb.ca>;Kelvin Goertzen <minedu@leg.gov.mb.ca>;Dennis Smook dennis.smook@leg.gov.mb.ca>;Bob Lagasse <bob.lagasse@leg.gov.mb.ca>.