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LETTER: Time to pressure government for action on doctor shortage

Re: The ongoing crisis concerning the loss of family doctors and walk-in clinics. I was both saddened and disheartened to see the media interviews with Dr. Matthew Ward, medical director of the Eagle Creek Medical Clinic, concerning the loss of two family physicians from the clinic.

Two more physicians have moved on to other opportunities because of an antiquated system that does not provide adequate compensation which now has further added to the physician shortage in the Greater Victoria area. It is now estimated that over 100,000 citizens are without access to a family doctor.

This situation has become a crisis where there doesn’t seem to be a concerted effort to provide a solution, resulting in Dr. Ward having to take time out from his busy medical practice to bring attention to the growing problem via the media.

The time has come to address this issue in order that every citizen’s right to proper medical care is secured now and for the future. Ms. Camille Currie has initiated a social media group entitled “Bring Back our Family Doctors and our Walk In Clinics” in which she has started an online petition to pressure the government for action.

I have just signed the petition and made a small donation to help promote her efforts. I will take it one step further and will write, not email, Health Minister Adrian Dix, PO Box 9050 Stn. Prov. Govt., Victoria, BC, V8W 9E2. I am asking that he take the necessary steps to properly address the issue of compensation and a reduction in administrative workload for the physicians of this province in order to properly secure adequate health care for all the citizens of B.C.

I would encourage those affected by the lack of a family doctor to both sign the petition as well as write the minister.

Lawrence Palke

Saanich