(File photo)

Community meeting held to discuss ideas on retaining physicians

In 2019, five full-time and one-part time physician left Vanderhoof

Northern Health held a community meeting in Vanderhoof to discuss and understand community needs and ideate on attracting and retaining physicians.

The meeting held Nov. 28 was closed to the media and participants were chosen by Northern Health. There were sixty participants which largely included residents of the community, district mayor and council, representation from neighbouring First Nation communities and towns.

On Friday, the Omineca Express spoke with Dr. Shannon Douglas from Vanderhoof and Dr. David Snadden from Prince George who were a part of the community meeting.

There is ‘tremendous will and desire’ in the community to contribute in not just attracting physicians to work in Vanderhoof, but also to make sure workers and their families enjoy living here, says Douglas.

“We are trying to understand the kind of support and resources we can provide to physicians, to support their children and families, employment for their spouse and housing. In that sense the entire community has something to contribute,” she said.

Building a sense of community for workers who move to Vanderhoof regardless of their profession was an important piece of the meeting.

Snadden said there is a discussion happening on whether the local clinic needs any changes. Nothing concrete has been decided and the topic is still just being discussed, he said, “but the fact that people are beginning to think ‘what kind of infrastructure do we need if we try to get teams in the area working together.’ I think that is an important part of the discussion.”

Another idea is having a go-to person in Vanderhoof who can bring people together and help workers transition into the community, he said.

Meanwhile in 2019, five full-time and one-part time physician left the community. Eryn Collins, media relations and public affairs at Northern Health told the Omineca Express in a Nov. 1 statement that some of these departures were related to retirements, and others were personal decisions made by the physicians.

Northern Health has been proactively working with local physicians on a recruitment plan around these departures, she wrote.

Currently, Vanderhoof has 10 full time and part-time local physicians, as well as a full time Nurse Practitioner. There are locum physicians working in both the Omineca Clinic and St. John Hospital emergency room as well.

She said that even though Northern Health is actively recruiting for additional primary care providers, they do not expect any gaps with respect to residents’ ability to access primary care.


Aman Parhar
Editor, Vanderhoof Omineca Express

aman.parhar@ominecaexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

“Nature defines my art”: Bethany Giesbrecht, painter

This story is part of a weekly series showcasing artists in the region

Vanderhoofian nominated for the Premier’s Awards

Phil Turgeon has been nominated by the Ministry of Children and Family Development under the Leadership category.

Rio Tinto responds to U.S. aluminum import tariffs

The tariffs were imposed by President Donald Trump Aug. 6

‘GoFundMe’ page created for Vanderhoof women who were in a brutal accident last month

Sasha Mortensen and Jessica Raymond were hit by a pick-up truck July 29, while in an embrace on Keith Road next to Plateau Mill.

Vanderhoof sees a surge of scam callers

Residents have received multiple unknown phone calls from a person claiming to be a representative of the CRA or law enforcement, local mounties said.

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Unofficial holidays: the weird and wonderful things people celebrate around the world

On any given day of the year, there are several strange, silly or serious holidays to observe

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

Gene editing debate takes root with organic broccoli, new UBC research shows

Broccoli is one of the best-known vegetables with origins in this scientific haze

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

B.C. wildfire crews have battled 111 blazes in the last seven days

Twenty-nine fires remain active, as of Friday (Aug 7)

Most Read