A B.C. man decided to create a website to help people find family doctors accepting patients. Because Victoria is considered high-demand, clinic openings can’t be posted publicly. (Unsplash)

A B.C. man decided to create a website to help people find family doctors accepting patients. Because Victoria is considered high-demand, clinic openings can’t be posted publicly. (Unsplash)

Greater Victoria in high-demand on website that connects B.C. residents with doctors

Nanaimo man started project to help people find family physicians accepting patients

An online service created by a B.C. resident can help Greater Victoria residents find a family doctor – for a fee.

FindaDoctorbc.ca helps patients find physicians who are accepting new patients. The website monitors about 257 family clinics representing 1,500 doctors – with more clinics added regularly.

Electrical engineer Don Gayton created and launched the website about nine months ago. Gayton moved from North Vancouver to Nanaimo, where he and his family struggled to find a physician.

Now, both of Gayton’s daughters live in Victoria, and neither is able to find a doctor.

“It left the impression that it’s so hard to find a family physician here, especially for newcomers,” he said. “So I started thinking, there must be a better way.”

Gayton created the website as a side project, filling a much-needed void for cohesive clinic listings.

“The lists out there are almost worse than useless. The information is all in different formats,” Gayton said. His website works through crowd-sourced user feedback, providing updates on clinics accepting and not-accepting patients.

READ ALSO: Lack of doctors causing frustration for patients

Residents can use the map feature to see locations where doctors are accepting new patients – or they can sign up for the priority notification service, which sends an email alert as soon as a doctor or practitioner begins accepting new patients. That services costs $3.99 per month. A waiver is available for people who can’t afford the fee.

But for the south Island, alerts are the only option on Gayton’s website. The region is considered a ‘high demand area’ – one in which the demand for doctors is so high that openings can’t be posted online because it results in an overwhelming number of phone calls to the clinic.

“The demand in Victoria is ridiculous. I was surprised how Victoria is a real problem – and Nanaimo – while the rest of the Island is pretty well served,” Gayton said.

With the alert system, users are notified on a first-come, first-serve basis. But it’s not often that availability opens up.

In some areas, telemedicine options launched during the pandemic opened up availability at clinics, Gayton noted, but for Greater Victoria, the demand still outweighs the supply.

“The idea of everyone calling all the clinics – what a burden on the clinics that is – and a burden on the patients,” he said. “So I think there must be a better way to do it, but it’s not easy in a place like Victoria.”

READ ALSO: B.C. medical students call for more residency spots to curb doctor shortage


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

physiciansVictoria

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

Just Posted

Cathy Armstrong, executive director of the Land Conservancy, Paul Nursey CEO of Destination Greater Victoria and Saanich Coun. Susan Brice helped to kick off the annual Greater Victoria Flower Count at Abkhazi Garden Monday. This year, the flower count is less about rubbing the region’s weather in the rest of Canada’ faces, and more about extending a bouquet of compassion and love. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
2021 Greater Victoria Flower Count sows seeds of compassion

Friendly flower count competition runs from March 3 to 10

The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre has reopened with 45 shelter spots for people experiencing homelessness in Victoria. (Courtesy of Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre)
Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre shelter in Victoria reopens with spots for 45 people

Arena is an interim step until long-term housing is found

(Black Press Media file photo)
A disruptive rider was forced to leave a BC Transit bus on Monday morning. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Greater Victoria students lose bid for transit commission voting seat

Commission members took issue over students not being elected officials

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 80+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Det. Sgt. Jim Callender. (Hamilton Police Service screenshot)
B.C. man dead, woman seriously injured after shooting in Hamilton, Ont.

The man was in the process of moving to the greater Toronto area, police say

Police have identified the vehicle involved in the Feb. 14 hit-and-run in Chemainus and are continuing to investigate. (Black Press Media files)
Police seize and identify suspect vehicle in hit-and-run

Investigation into death expected to be lengthy and involved

(Black Press file photo)
Child in critical condition, homicide investigators probe incident near Agassiz

The child was transported to hospital but is not expected to survive

Sewage plant in Lower Mainland, operated by Metro Vancouver. (Metro Vancouver screenshot)
‘Poop tracker’ launches as researchers test Lower Mainland sewage water for COVID-19

‘Studying the virus in wastewater allows researchers to look at an entire population…’

This poster, spreading misinformation regarding COVID-19 restrictions, has been popping up in communities across Vancouver Island.
UPDATED: Poster popping up in Island communities falsely claiming COVID restrictions are over

Unattributed poster claims COVID restrictions ended March 1; Island Health responds

Most Read