We attended the Dr. Michael Rachlis lecture at North Island College last Wednesday evening.
It was a full house to hear how our health-care system can be sustainable. He challenged the myths that health-care costs are out of control and that we aging baby boomers will really deep six medicare. He presented many examples of how system reorganization, such as group primary care with accessible hours to manage people who need care on weekends and evenings.
He is adamant that better use of health professionals such as nurse practitioners, registered nurses within scope as well as using the expensive expertise of physicians when complex medical management is required.
He strongly supports the use of social workers, as much of the complexity of management is due to social problems and the determinants of health such as poverty and homelessness.
He talked about “advanced access,” which is a tool to help physicians’ offices manage workload better, so that people who need to be seen quickly can be accommodated without waiting. The B.C. Ministry of Health, in consultation with the BC Medical Association, has developed a half-day module for physicians and the medical office assistants to attend, so that they can implement this program. It is available throughout the province.
With these ideas in mind, we urge everyone to go to viha.fluidsurveys.com/s/ih2018/ and complete the Island Health (IH) online survey seeking input for the 2018 strategic plan. Information about the consultation and the form can also be accessed through the IH (formerly VIHA) website at www.viha.ca.
Susan Lanyon and Betty Tate,
Editor’s note: Susan Lanyon and Betty Tate are retired registered nurses wiring on behalf of the Comox Valley Association of Registered Nurses of BC Network.