Paul Hardy is originally from the big city of Toronto but has been living in central Alberta for over 20 years working as a surgeon at the Red Deer hospital.
He decided to run for the Alberta Party so he could help fight for changes at the Red Deer Regional Hospital.
While not working, Hardy uses his free time for cycling, rowing and spending time with family.
What policies are you looking to really stress during this election?
“The most important policy from my perspective is the hospital expansion in Red Deer. We have been left behind on expansion of our beds, operating rooms and cardiac cath lab, so I think that we need to push for this very hard.”
What is something you are most proud of about your party?
“The slate of candidates that are running. We have a full slate of 87 candidates and the quality of the people that are running throughout the province is incredible, and I'm pleased to be running alongside with them.”
What is your area of expertise in your party/what are you most keen on?
“Yes, my experience is with surgery and administration of health. I was quite involved with organizing surgery and getting the most efficiency out of operating rooms in the central zone as possible.”
What is your attachment to this area?
“My wife grew up in Lacombe and my in-laws also live in Lacombe so I visit frequently and living close by in Red Deer for the past 21 years I know it fairly well.”
What do you think is most important to Central Alberta area residents about your platform?
“I think hospital expansion is top of the list for voters in the central zone and red deer specifically.”
What needs to be changed at the hospital?
“We had a needs assessment a couple of years ago that showed that we were 96 beds short, three operating rooms short and 18 emergency beds short. The updated needs assessment was completed months ago but it has not been made public. I believe this shows even more need for the hospital to serve the central zone and Red Deer citizens so that they are close to home. So much of what we hope to accomplish is based on that updated needs assessment, which likely would include many more beds operating rooms and a cardiac cath lab.”
What made you decide to run for the party and create the changes?
“We've been aware of the lack of possible expansion for years. They've come up with plans as long ago as 2006 but they were lost during the creation of Alberta Health Services so we finally went public on February 28th 2017. I think both the government and Alberta Health Services and not to mention the public were astounded at the deficiencies that have developed over the years. It was through this advocacy work over the past two years publicly that I became interested and it just seems like a natural progression to throw my hat in the ring for running for the Alberta party to try to get this accomplished.”