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October 27, 2017 10:51 pm

Quesnel Celebrates Opening of Primary Care Clinic

Monday, May 16, 2016 @ 6:00 AM


Official “ribbon” cutting  at the Quesnel  Primary Care Clinic – photo courtesy  Northern Health

Quesnel, B.C.- It  is finally open.   Quesnel’s new Primary Care Clinic officially starts seeing patients today, about a year  after the  plans for the Clinic were being developed.

The clinic  was created in response to  the departure of four  family physicians  in Quesnel  and  possible  departure  of others.

“We’ll have two physicians,  two  nurse practitioners and support staff” says Debbie Strang,   Northern Health Quesnel Health Service Administrator  “We’ve taken a list  of patients waiting for new physicians because we have four new physicians  later this fall and one in  January.  So it will be fully staffed, and we will have our inter-professional team going in there later in the year as well to wrap services around the patient”.

The community care clinic model  provides services in a different  manner than has been  seen in the past.   Patients attending the clinic won’t have to be referred to  some specialists  as  those  specialists will already be working  at the clinic “It’s an additional  resource for the people that we serve in that  it brings  services to them as opposed to  waiting  for physician appointments in the traditional model” says Strang.    She offers this example, “if a patient is in seeing  a Doctor and mentions they feel a little down,  the Doctor has the option to reach out to the care team and somebody from   the mental health side would  come to  meet with the patient  while that patient is still in the Dr’s office.”   Traditionally,   patients are given a referral and they have to  go somewhere else for  an appointment “This really streamlines  health care services” says Strang.

“We felt that we  needed to create the new Primary Care Clinic and model  as another  recruitment tool for new physicians coming  to practice that might be looking for a different way to practice.”  The recruitment efforts have  been  very successful with several  physicians recruited to Quesnel since last June.   Two arrived this spring,  seven others will  arrive   by the fall, and one more will arrive  in January of 2017.  Strang says by this time next year,   Quesnel will have its full compliment of physicians,    something that hasn’t happened  for more than a decade.

Strang says the clinic  model also means  patients can spend more time with their Doctor during an appointment “You can talk about two or three of your needs  and start addressing them right away as opposed to a variety of appointments.”

Patients who are searching for a family physician can have their names added to a list, and will be contacted when existing primary care providers have capacity. The health care team will consult with patients who require regular follow-up for complex health conditions, such as expectant mothers and those receiving cancer treatment, to see if attachment opportunities are available. Priority will be determined on a case-by-case basis, as well as by an individual’s needs.

It cost  about $900 thousand  dollars  to renovate the building to house the clinic,  which is located   on Front Street , across from the GR Baker Hospital.




I’m guessing that they must have changed how the Doctors are paid. Normally you would have to make an appointment for every aliment, and the Government would be billed accordingly. If you can discuss various problems during an appointment and take up the Doctors time, then there must be some other way that he/she is compensated.

In some area’s Doctors get a basic salary, (something in the area of $300,000.00) per year and therefore don’t have to work under the old system.

Perhaps this is some variation of that concept.

Even family doctors are specialising.. Some of them won’t take pregnant women.. I go to see the Doc about my ailments, certainly not making the special trip to discuss just one thing.. We are allotted a certain lenght of time and I take advantage of it. Why go there if he’s only going to discuss one thing while he gets paid fifty or hundred bucks for five minutes. For doctors like this, they should get paid less

We were told by our Doctor “if we made an appointment for one issue, that is what we were able to discuss. If another ailment came up we had to make another app”. Luckily I don’t see him much, but I really feel for those requiring many appointments throughout the year. Many elderly have a hard time coordinating many trips to the doctor.
And yes, our family doctor does not deliver babies. They also do not take on additional family members. A mom and baby cannot see the same doctor as Dad because the “family” physician will not take additional patients. So Dad goes to his Doctor and Mom and baby go to another one. Neither Doctor will bend. There is no meaning left in “family physician”.

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