09/15/2011 03:49 EDT | Updated 01/12/2012 02:09 EST

Alberta Health in 'solid' financial shape; has $65M surplus for 1st quarter

MEDICINE HAT, Alta. - Alberta Health Services has released its first-quarter results for its 2011-12 fiscal year.

It says there is a surplus of $65 million, but it will likely be reduced due to higher expenditures and additional purchases of internally funded equipment in the second half of the year.

Board chairman Ken Hughes says the department is in -- quote -- "solid financial shape" due to the five-year funding commitment from the Alberta government.

Total revenues are $2.84 billion for the first quarter, while expenses are $2.78 billion

In June, AHS approved an $11.9 billion budget that included spending in key areas, including emergency department wait times, radiation therapy wait times, growth in continuing care beds and services, and timely access to a range of surgical procedures, including cataracts, hip and knee replacements and cardiac surgery.

The department's current fiscal year runs April 1, 2011, to March 31, 2012.