Health minister says teams are the future

B.C. has more family doctors than ever — and more than the Canadian average

To the editor;

B.C. has more family doctors than ever — and more than the Canadian average — but we also face increased demand from an aging population.

In addition, we have many doctors working fewer hours or in walk-in clinics rather than in full-service family practices.

Good primary care is more than simply connecting a doctor and patient. It’s about meeting all patient health needs, creating better access to care providers and increasing quality of care.

We need to look at the issue from a broader system perspective to do this — and that is what we are doing with our health-care partners.

For example, in Kamloops, Interior Health and the local Division of Family Practice are setting up an integrated health team on the North Shore.

This will allow patients to work with a team of health professionals — doctors, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, nurses and others — on their specific needs.

This allows the system to make the patient the central focus of the health-care system, where it should be.

In regards to the comments about administration, the independent Canadian Institute for Health Information notes administrative spending on health in B.C. is at an all-time low of 3.4 per cent.

We will continue to work with Interior Health, doctors, nurse practitioners and other health professionals to provide better access and better care to patients in Kamloops and across B.C.

Terry Lake

Minister of Health