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Pharmacists warn of potentially dangerous supplement circulating

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A local pharmacist is warning the public to be wary when ordering drugs or natural health products online after witnessing the damage they can do.
Ray Ainscough of Riverside Value Drug Mart and pharmacy student Nicholas Poole tell the Mail there have been patrons ordering a supplement called Umary online. It is widely available on Amazon, Walmart and other retailers. The Mexican manufactured substance purports to be a natural health supplement.
“They are using it for pain, basically. It is reported to be a natural health product to reduce your pain tolerance and provides pain relief. On the ingredients, it has a bunch of natural health products listed however, there have been some tests done, such as by Test Your Drugs in B.C. and they have found the tablets may contain high doses of diclofenac,” said Poole.
He explains this is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. This kind of drug goes through your kidneys to be excreted.
“They reported up to 700 milligrams of diclofenac, which typically has a maximum dose of 100 milligrams,” he said. “It may cause a lot of adverse side effects like decreased kidney function, cardiovascular events and increased risk of bleeding.”
Ainscough said a patient came into the pharmacy and said they had seen some effects on their kidney levels, and did some research. The pharmacy also did some research and saw this had been reported.
“We have had about four patients now who are using it and have had adverse effects from it,” said Poole.
He explains that when a product is advertised as a natural health supplement it has fewer restrictions and guidelines to follow. This product does not list diclofenac as an ingredient.
“Immediately discontinue using it, bring any bottles you have to the pharmacy so they can dispose of it properly and then you can follow up with your pharmacy or your family physician just to make sure nothing has gone wrong with your body because of taking it,” said Poole.
Milkumar Patel of Shoppers Drug Mart in Drumheller tells the Mail, he had one patient asking about Umary a couple of months ago but has not heard from them since.
He does recommend that people be wary when exploring natural health supplements, and approach them with a critical mindset. Be skeptical of miracle claims. It is always important to consult with healthcare professionals and do your research, looking into quality and safety. He notes to be aware of possible interactions with other medications and start with low doses. It is very important to consider the sources, especially when buying online.
Ainscough says it is rare for them to see these kinds of products slip through.
“But when there is a third person in a week, and two of the three have had medical emergencies, it scares the heck out of me.”


Trochu Housing Corporation receives grant for seniors living space

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Thanks to an investment from the federal and provincial governments, the Trochu Housing Corporation is able to move forward with its supportive living facility.
According to a release, the governments of Canada and Alberta are providing nearly $66 million to help build 335 new affordable housing units and 129 shelter beds for those in housing need across Alberta. This investment is cost-matched by both governments thanks to the Canada – Alberta Bilateral Agreement under the National Housing Strategy.
This funding is delivered through the Alberta Affordable Housing Partnership which is contributing $9.5 million for seniors housing in Trochu. This is one of eight projects.
“The Trochu and surrounding community is very grateful for this funding from the Alberta Affordable Housing Partnership Program. This funding will ensure affordable housing options are part of our Trochu Seniors Supportive Living Facility Project, which is being built by the Trochu Housing Corporation and is expected to start later this year. We thank the minister and the department for supporting our proposal for this critical affordable housing initiative for our community,” said Barry Kletke, mayor of the Town of Trochu, and chair of the Trochu Housing Corporation Board.

The project is to develop a new seniors facility on the subdivision west of the Trochu Arboretum. It is proposed to have 80 units, of which 40 will be long-term supportive units, 16 will be lodge living and 24 units will be independent living/ life leases.
The Trochu council approved the budget for the projects at its March meeting. The total project is currently estimated to be $41 million, but won’t be firmed up until it is sent for tender. Along with the Affordable Housing partnership grant, the project also received $11.5 million from AHS for the long-term care units, as well as life lease sales and financing. It will be owned by the Trochu Housing Corporation and operated by Covenant Health.
“We are constantly working to increase our affordable housing supply and provide facilities that meet community needs. We will continue to work to identify and support projects that ensure those in need have somewhere to turn and safe, affordable places to live,” said Jason Nixon, Minister of Seniors, Community and Social Services.
“The National Housing Strategy demonstrates that when governments and local organizations work together to support housing – anything is possible. Hundreds of Albertans seeking refuge will benefit from these projects, providing them with a safe, affordable home and a better quality of life,” said Randy Boissonnault, Federal Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages.

Jurassic Record attempt not recognized by Guinness

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    Despite the best efforts of organizers, Drumheller residents and the thousands who showed up on Saturday, April 27, the community’s name will not end up in the Guinness Book of World Records.
    The Jurassic Jamboree, held in Drumheller, Alberta, concluded with resounding cheers and smiles, embodying the true essence of community spirit and togetherness. The event included an attempt at the Guinness Book of World Records for “Largest Gathering of People Dressed as Dinosaurs”.
    It seemed like a shoe in. With the previous record only being 252, the downtown core saw more than 3,000 people in suits. According to a release from Travel Drumheller, “Unfortunately, we could not obtain an exact measurement to officially break the Guinness World Records title for the ‘Largest Gathering of  People Dressed as Dinosaurs.’”
    “We are incredibly proud of what we accomplished with over 3,000 dinosaurs in attendance at the Jurassic Jamboree, even though we didn’t achieve our goal of officially breaking the Guinness World Records title,” said Keri Looijen, Marketing Manager at Travel Drumheller.
    Throughout the weekend, the Jurassic Jamboree transformed Drumheller into a prehistoric wonderland, drawing in dinosaur enthusiasts from all across Canada and the US to revel in a world of wonder and excitement. Proving to the world, Drumheller is in fact, the Dinosaur Capital of the World. Adorned in vibrant dinosaur costumes, participants radiated enthusiasm and passion, bringing the ancient creatures to life with their dance moves and infectious energy.
    “The support and enthusiasm from everyone who attended was truly inspiring, and we are grateful to everyone who participated and contributed to the event’s success. This isn’t the only chance, we will attempt to break the record again in the future and the Jurassic Jamboree will now be an annual event,” said Looijen.


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