To the editor,
Re: Doctor shortage shows problems with health care, Letters, Aug. 25.
I totally agree with this letter. It is impossible to find a doctor who accepts new patients here in Nanaimo.
I have been a patient of the same medical clinic since 1979. Over that time, I have had to change physicians three times – one retired, one returned to school to specialize and one changed to a different practice. With the first two, there was a physician in the clinic taking new patients. However, with this last change, they have been unsuccessful in bringing in another doctor, and none of those in the clinic are taking new patients.
Relying on urgent care clinics and 811 deals with the immediate issue. However, a regular family physician provides consistent care, as they become familiar with the individual’s health history – issues, problems, and lifestyle.
It makes one wonder if Nanaimo is not attractive to physicians, if graduating numbers are insufficient to meet increased population needs, salaries are not attractive, or there is something else not made public.
I agree politicians need to address the problem, not simply pay lip service to the ‘great public health system.’
It requires political involvement at all levels, local, regional, provincial, and federal. Haven’t heard any acknowledgement by any of them so far – hey, there is an election coming soon.
J. Patrick, Nanaimo
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