Quadra residents might be facing the possibility of more ferry trips because of the reduction of medical services. Photo by Mike Chouinard/Campbel River Mirror

Quadra Island faces quandary over doctors

One office to close as doctors move or retire

Quadra Island is facing a quandary when it comes to medical care, says Jim Abram the island’s Strathcona Regional District director.

At the June 6 meeting of the Strathcona Regional District board, he asked his colleagues to support a motion to write the Ministry of Health and the Island Health Authority about losing medical services. The motion passed unanimously.

“There’s two clinics on the island, and one of them is closing,” Abram said. “We’re going to have around a thousand people looking for a doctor.”

At one of the offices, a doctor is retiring and the other is moving, which also leaves a local nurse-practitioner without space in which to work. Another doctor’s office, Abram said, is not in a position to expand service.

“The other clinic has absolutely zero space,” he said.

Along with the loss of doctors and the nurse-practitioner service, the residents face losing lab service hours, which happen two times a week, and mental health services that run out of the office.

Abram said this situation means many residents will be putting greater pressure on the medical facilities in Campbell River.

“It is going to be a capacity issue for the North Island Hospital,” he said.

The loss of the doctors will also mean extra ferry trips that will only benefit BC Ferries, as patients will be provided travel-assistance forms that require public funding to cover the trips.

“That has been estimated to be in the millions of dollars,” he said.

Area B Director Noba Anderson said the community on Cortes Island faced a similar situation a few years ago.

Cortes, though, formed a community medical association that owns the health centre and has a team of four doctors to share the practice and rotate shifts, often doing locums or having shared practices in other communities.

“We had a very, very hard time finding a single doctor,” she said. “That’s going to be increasingly the case across Canada. Single doctors don’t want to have these kinds of practices.”

Abram responded by saying Quadra is looking at such solutions over the long term but because there was not currently any community-owned property, they need an answer for the short term to make up for the loss of the doctors.

“That could take a while to set up a clinic, to set up a non-profit society,” he said. “It’s not cheap.

“You have to have somewhere to house these people.”

Just Posted

Vancouver Island pharmacist suspended for giving drugs with human placenta

RCMP had samples of the seized substances tested by Health Canada

Motor vehicle incident on Mount Washington road involving a motorcycle

Emergency personnel were called out to the scene of a motor vehicle… Continue reading

Bylaw rescinded after vacation rental owners express concerns

Concerns included a lack of consultation

Get ready for a week of sunshine across Vancouver Island

Environment Canada is forecasting temperatures in the high teens all this week

B.C. students send books to displaced students of Hornby Island school fire

Maple Ridge elementary school teacher says students learned about acts of kindness

Video: Flyers new mascot ‘Gritty’ a bearded, googly-eyed terror

The Philadelphia Flyers unveiled their new mascot Monday, and as one would expect of the team that gave us the “Broad Street Bullies,” he’s far from cuddly.

Vancouver Island designated as foreign trade zone

Designation simplifies importing and exporting and provides duty relief

Edmonton cannabis company revenues more than triples to $19.1 million

Aurora Cannabis revenues more than triple in fourth quarter

Seattle one step closer to NHL after arena plan approved

Seattle City Council unanimously approved plans for a privately funded $700 million renovation of KeyArena

Harvest Moon to light up B.C. skies with an ‘autumn hue’

It’s the first moon after the autumn equinox

Hockey league gets $1.4M for assistance program after Humboldt Broncos crash

Program will help players, families, coaches and volunteers after the shock of the deadly crash

Canada has removed six out of 900 asylum seekers already facing U.S. deportation

Ottawa had said the ‘overwhelming majority’ had been removed

Appeal pipeline decision but consult Indigenous communities, Scheer says

The federal appeals court halted the Trans Mountain expansion last month

Most Read