Our Health Matters – WHAC working to improve healthcare

Monthly update from the Wellness and Health Action Coalition in Ashcroft.

Concerned about healthcare? A local group is doing something about it.

The Wellness and Health Action Coalition (WHAC) is a group comprised of local residents working toward an effective healthcare model for people living in the Ashcroft, Cache Creek, Clinton, Spences Bridge and Walhachin area.

In partnership with several agencies, WHAC organized a community consultation process held last September that resulted in a report prepared by UBCO School of Nursing Associate Dr. Barbara Pesut. Through this consultation process, common areas of concern were identified by participants and have formed the basis for the Wellness and Health Action Coalition’s priorities going forward.

To start, WHAC is focussing on recruitment and retention of health care professionals, communication with key stakeholders, First Nations input on areas where additional support is required and transportation to meet health care needs.

WHAC has had an ongoing schedule of meetings since receiving the consultation report last Fall.

On Jan. 8, the core members met with Interior Health (IH) officials to discuss physician recruitment and retention, support for the work and challenges of local physicians, asset utilization, staffing and use of the ER, and potential increased involvement of BC Ambulance staff. Our meeting confirmed that recruiting and retaining health care professionals is key to creating a new and more effective way of delivering health care to our catchment area. WHAC members were encouraged to take the lead in local health care development and to become involved in recruitment activities. The IH advertising to attract physicians to Ashcroft has since been updated.

Transportation is a key priority for many. Some people are being serviced well by local transit and the Heath Connections bus, but many others are having difficulty with transportation to meet their health care needs. Sometimes those sent to Royal Inland Hospital in the ambulance find themselves without proper clothing and/or a ride to get home. To address this, the Hospital Auxiliary has partnered with the Royal Inland Auxiliary to help solve clothing needs. WHAC has been in contact with ICBC and the Ministry of Transportation to assure insurance coverage for volunteers providing transportation.

We are grateful to MLA Jackie Tegart for bringing the Princeton “Support Our Health Care” group to Ashcroft to share their experience, and we appreciate their continued interest. We appreciate the support of IH, especially for our mentors Berni Easson, Lannea Parfitt, Dr. Curtis Bell and Ann James as well as our Drs. Peedikayil and Govindasamy for their insight, help and encouragement.

Thanks also to our area residents for taking part as they can and holding to the idea that more effective rural health care can be accomplished.

You can help. Contact David Durksen 250-453-9864 or ddurksen@coppervalley.bc.ca for more information.

Alice Durksen

Just Posted

Aerial view of a wildfire at 16 Mile, 11 kilometres northwest of Cache Creek, that started on the afternoon of June 15. (Photo credit: BC Wildfire Service)
Wildfire at 16 Mile now being held

Wildfire started on the afternoon of June 15 at 16 Mile, east of Highway 97

The Desert Daze Music Festival is doggone good fun, as shown in this photo from the 2019 festival, and it will be back in Spences Bridge this September. (Photo credit: Barbara Roden)
‘Best Little Fest in the West’ returning to Spences Bridge

Belated 10th anniversary Desert Daze festival going ahead with music, vendors, workshops, and more

Internet speed graphic, no date. Photo credit: Pixabay
Study asks for public input to show actual Internet speeds in BC communities

Federal maps showing Internet speeds might be inflated, so communities lose out on faster Internet

Fireworks are among the things now banned throughout the Kamloops Fire Centre, as the weather heats up and a dry summer looms. (Photo credit: Black Press files)
Category 2 and 3 open fires, fireworks now banned in Kamloops Fire Centre

Ban on certain types of fires and fire activities in place until Oct. 15

Cache Creek Village office, date unknown. (Photo credit: Wendy Coomber)
Cache Creek eyes water conservation bylaw as usage increases

Water bylaw was considered in 2019 but did not move forward

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
VIDEO: Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens as Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents the province’s latest budget, April 20, 2021. The budget projects $19 billion in deficits over three years. (Hansard TV)
B.C. government budget balloons, beyond COVID-19 response

Provincial payroll up 104,000 positions, $10 billion since 2017

Ocean debris is shown on Long Beach in Tofino, B.C. on April, 18, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Shoreline cleanup finds COVID-related trash increased during height of the pandemic

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup reports litter from single-use food packaging nearly doubled

Doctor David Vallejo and his fiancee Doctor Mavelin Bonilla hold photos of themselves working, as they kiss at their home in Quito, Ecuador, Wednesday, June 9, 2021. Doctor Vallejo and Doctor Bonilla suspended their wedding in order to tend to COVID-19 patients and in the process Vallejo got sick himself with the disease, ending up in an ICU for several days. (AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)
Love, sacrifice and surviving COVID-19: one couple’s story

COVID hits Ecuadorian doctors who delayed wedding to treat sick

St. Joseph's Mission site is located about six kilometres from Williams Lake First Nation. (Photo submitted)
Williams Lake First Nation to search residential school site for unmarked graves

St. Joseph’s Mission Indian Residential School operated from 1886 to 1981

Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lotto Max jackpot goes unclaimed again

42 of the 64 Maxmillion prizes of $1 million were won, the majority were sold in Ontario

FILE - This July 6, 2017 file photo shows prescription drugs in a glass flask at the state crime lab in Taylorsville, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Contaminants in generic drugs may cause long-term harm to DNA: B.C. researcher

Scientist says findings suggest high volume overseas facilities require strict regulation

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., on April 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Labour shortages, closed borders major obstacles to B.C. restaurant, tourism restarts

Industry expert says it won’t start to recover until international travellers can visit

Most Read