Local health care strategy needs input

Ashcroft health care advocates are calling on concerned citizens to give input on how to revive local health care.

Concerns about what’s happening to our health system are on everyone’s mind, and now is the time to do something about it.

A group of concerned citizens, following the community meeting facilitated by MLA Jackie Tegart here in April, are organizing a Community Health Care Consultation in partnership with the Village of Ashcroft, TNRD Area I, Interior Health, UBC Okanagan and the Wellness & Health Action Coalition.

An organizing team is made up of Mayor Andy Anderson (Councillor Alice Durksen, alternate), TNRD Director Steve Rice, Shirley Dobson and Ron Hood (Wellness & Health Action Coalition), David Durksen, Ed Staples, Neinke Klaver, Brad Hope (Princeton Coordinating Committee), Bernie Easson (Jennifer Thur, alternate, Interior Health), and Dr. Barb Pesut, UBCO School of Nursing.

Participation in the consultation is by invitation. Invitations have been sent out to groups in the Ashcroft, Cache Creek, Clinton and Spences Bridge area who have an interest in wellness and health activities.  Invited groups include health service groups, municipal and regional district governments, Native Bands, recreation groups, service clubs, churches, senior’s groups, education and major businesses.

All residents in the service area are invited to provide input to the consultation through any group they belong to. Each group is asked to discuss three questions: 1) What aspects of healthcare are working in your community? 2) What aspects are not working, and why? 3) What possible innovations might make things better?

Each community group is then asked to appoint a delegate to the consultation and present their findings.  The consultation will be held Tuesday, Sept. 16 in Ashcroft. Facilitator for the consultation will be Dr. Barbara Pesut, Associate Professor of the School of Nursing at UBCO. Dr. Pesut holds a Canada Research Chair in Health, Ethics and Diversity, with a special interest in rural health care. She facilitated a similar process in Princeton last year.

To ensure your input to this very important process, contact any group of which you are a member and discuss the three questions listed above. If you do not belong to any such group you can share your concerns and ideas with any member of the Wellness & Health Action Coalition. Shirley Dobson (250-453-9202), Chair, Wellness & Health Action Coalition.

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