VIHA caved under public pressure, did not provide proper leadership

Dear editor,
The reason we have the issue of two hospitals is that the Vancouver Island Health Authority was not able to describe health care for the future to those people who seemed to be so emotionally tied to "their hospital."
Dr. Phil Luke is absolutely correct: The vast majority of health care services are not provided in hospitals.

Dear editor,The reason we have the issue of two hospitals is that the Vancouver Island Health Authority was not able to describe health care for the future to those people who seemed to be so emotionally tied to “their hospital.”Dr. Phil Luke is absolutely correct: The vast majority of health care services are not provided in hospitals.VIHA’s job was to listen to what services people said they needed, and then design a system, which would have likely included one regional hospital to meet them. In my opinion they caved under public pressure and did not provide proper leadership.According to Ministry of Health stats, one-third of people in B.C. have one or more chronic illnesses and take up 85 per cent of the health care budget.Chronically ill people require excellent primary care, which is access to GPs, Nurse Practitioners, Nurses and other health professionals in a co-ordinated way which enables people to stay out of acute care hospitals. In fact, the latest research reports that system redesign is the best way to manage the growing numbers of chronically ill.This is what we should all be demanding. Not dithering around as to where a hospital should be located or if we need one or two.I was extremely disappointed that my own GP office has recently discontinued extended hours on evenings and weekends. This is a step backwards.This was an excellent service and prevented people from having to access walk-in clinics (which have no access to records) or go to the emergency department. It is too bad that there is no overall coordination of service provision.No wonder the public gets confused, and clings to the “I want my hospital” idea.Susan Lanyon RN (ret.),Merville

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