Two small hospitals will not have drawing power to attract specialists

Dear editor,
We understand that VIHA has decided to build a hospital in Courtenay as well as in Campbell River.
I recently was made aware of the fact that in or around 2006 VIHA was considering building a regional hospital "in a neutral location" between Campbell River and the Comox Valley.

Dear editor,

We understand that VIHA has decided to build a hospital in Courtenay as well as in Campbell River.

I recently was made aware of the fact that in or around 2006 VIHA was considering building a regional hospital “in a neutral location” between Campbell River and the Comox Valley.

This to me is a very sensible solution to this ongoing challenge. Building two smaller hospitals, one in Campbell River and one in Courtenay, will not attract the necessary medical specialists to settle in either one of these cities.

Since February 2010 I have been volunteering as a driver for Wheels For Wellness (WFW). On an annual basis WFW transports thousands of patients to Victoria and Nanaimo to seek medical treatment from medical specialists that are not available north of Nanaimo.

WFW has 15 vans transporting patients each working day. Most of these patients are elderly and are unable to make the long journey to Victoria. Often times these patients are picked up as early as 4:30 a.m. to make their 9 a.m. appointment. These appointments can be for cancer treatments, eye treatment, hospitalization, pain clinics, etc.

As well, WFW makes trips to Vancouver for medical specialization.

To attract the necessary medical expertise (specialists) to the central part of the Island, we need a large regional hospital, rather than two small hospitals in Courtenay and Campbell River. Having one large regional hospital serves several purposes, one of which is that it would make the central island more attractive for qualified medical practitioners to settle in this area.

In addition it would make it easier for our aging population to find the necessary medical care without having to travel to Victoria.

Rather than submitting to “ill-perceived” public pressure, VIHA should take a leadership role and properly explain things to the residents of this area and build one large hospital along the Island Highway that would be easily accessible for Campbell River and Comox Valley residents.

The largest negative I have heard is that it would take as much as half an hour to get to the hospital from Comox.

However, that is nothing compared to what it takes to get patients to hospitals in major cities such as Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary or Toronto. It often times takes much longer to reach a hospital in these locations.

As the heading on the VIHA webpage indicates, “board members of VIHA are chosen for their leadership skills, decision-making abilities and willingness to be accountable.”

Certainly in this case leadership skills are of prime importance. Remember, it is never too late to make the right decision.

Jack and Henrietta Schenk,

Courtenay

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

Just Posted

The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 160 Comox, B.C. Poppy Chairman, Kent Guilford presenting cheques to the following organizations in support of their venues: (top left) The Sea Cadet Corps who assisted in last year’s Poppy campaign. (Top right) CFB Comox, Military Family Resource Center, Kim Hetherington, executive director MFRC. Bottom, The Views at St Joseph’s, Jessica Aldred, Health Care Foundation, Michael Aikins, senior operations leader. We wish to Thank All those who supported last year’s Poppy Campaign and we hope we will have your continued support this year. Thank you all.
Comox Valley gives back

Spotlight on some of the groups, businesses and individuals who make the Comox Valley great

Union Bay voters chose a new direction Saturday. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Union Bay voters opt for governance change

More than seventy per cent support dissolving UBID to roll services into regional district

A small plane crashed in the water south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon. Two men had to be rescued, but reports indicate there were no serious injuries. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Small plane crash south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon

Two rescued from plane that had flipped in water; no serious injuries reported

Drift includes the work of poets from around the Comox Valley. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Drift features works by poets from the Comox Valley

Rather than have a set theme, the editors let 38 poets put their best work forward

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Christmas lights are something that people can do to celebrate the season that are not impacted by COVID-19. (file photo)
Editorial: Holidays will be different this year

This Christmas is going to be very different for our communities on… Continue reading

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Langley RCMP issued a $2,300 fine to the Riverside Calvary church in Langley in the 9600 block of 201 Street for holding an in-person service on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, despite a provincial COVID-19 related ban (Dan Ferguson/Black Press Media)
Langley church fined for holding in-person Sunday service

Calvary church was fined $2,300 for defying provincial order

The Nanaimo Rona location. (News Bulletin photo)
Rona home improvement store in Nanaimo advises that worker has COVID-19

Store re-opened Sunday after closing for cleaning Saturday

A pedestrian makes their way through the snow in downtown Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Wild winter, drastic swings in store for Canada this year: Weather Network

In British Columbia and the Prairies, forecasters are calling for above-average snowfall levels

NDP Leader John Horgan, left, speaks as local candidate Ravi Kahlon listens during a campaign stop at Kahlon’s home in North Delta, B.C., on April 18, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

Most Read