Spotlight On: Dr. Michel Hjelkrem, Orthopedic Surgeon

Dr. Michel Hjelkrem practices general orthopedics at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital (KBRH) with a special interest in complex hip and knee replacements. As the former head of the Orthopedic Department, Dr. Hjelkrem has worked and provided leadership at KBRH for 25 years. Beyond work, Dr. Hjelkrem can be found skiing in the winter months and paddling and cycling during summer time.

Over the years, Dr. Hjelkrem has collaborated to build a strong team of nurses, physicians, cleaners, and maintenance staff that take pride in their work. Driven by a commitment to excellence, Dr. Hjelkrem prioritizes getting patients back to normal life by providing the very best care. The KBRH Health Foundation’s Orthopedic Enhancement Project is crucial for ensuring improved care and complex surgeries are available at the regional hospital in Trail, alleviating the need to send patients out of town.

This project will allow the department to acquire specialized, cutting edge equipment for the orthopedic surgeons to use. This equipment will enable a new approach to hip replacements, allow for less invasive techniques overall, and will reduce pain and recovery time to get patients home and functioning faster. Same-day discharge will be introduced, which means Dr. Hjelkrem and other orthopedic surgeons will be able to increase capacity and decrease wait times for patients.

As a hip and knee specialist, Dr. Hjelkrem is looking forward to using the new orthopedic table purchased through your donations to the Orthopedic Enhancement Project. The table is needed to perform anterior hip replacements, which is a new approach to current practices at KBRH. Orthopedic surgery is a constantly evolving discipline and having the tools and equipment up-to-date is a necessity for Dr. Hjelkem and his team to ensure better care occurs closer to home.

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