Change in tactics needed to find doctors

Writer feels pursuing the usual options to find doctors for Ashcroft won't work anymore.

Dear Editor

Ken Platz, whom I’ve known for a number of years and consider a good friend, is down there three times a week at MLA Jackie Tegart’s office, with a placard. People honk as they go by, expressing agreement with what he is doing – protesting our lack of medical doctors and the gradual dismantling of our once beautiful hospital. Ken is a quiet, very sensible man, not inclined to protest or writing letters to the editor (like yours truly). But he is down there, reminding us all of what we do not have.

I read in our Journal newspaper, that our MLA is doing everything she can to bring attention to our plight. Ken himself, appreciates the time and the effort that the Wellness and Health Action Coalition group are making to get us some doctors.

The point is, none of this is working.

As to the oft stated, ‘But there are no medical doctors available’, I wonder.

Why does the town of Lillooet (which is about the same size as Ashcroft) have five permanent medical doctors? Have a beautiful hospital with all the resources which Ashcroft once had?

Why does the village of Lytton, much smaller than Ashcroft have at least two rotating doctors (who come from Lillooet)?

Perhaps we are negotiating with the wrong people.  Perhaps we should be negotiating with the people who first settled this country.  Both the Ashcroft Band and the Bonaparte Band have functioning medical clinics.

Federal money may very well be involved. Both communities mentioned have large native Indian populations.

Ashcroft has the hospital, the lab, the medical offices. What we don’t have are the doctors to keep them running.

When I called the Ashcroft Medical Clinic for an appointment to renew my prescriptions this week, I was told that there was no one there to do so. I was advised to go to ER, which was open from 6 pm on Friday, until 8 am on Monday, and ask for a prescription renewal.

I find this bizaare. Everyone working so hard to get us what other nearby communities have. Calling in the Health Minister, negotiating with Interior Health, etc. doesn’t seem to be getting us anywhere.

Two doctors in seven months, may be available? Fresh out of medical school? That’s a pretty dim vision to contemplate when you need a prescription filled.

Esther Darlington MacDonald

Ashcroft

Just Posted

Ashcroft hospital emergency closed sign, 2016. Photo credit: Barbara Roden
Ashcroft Hospital emergency department closed this weekend

Closure due to unexpected limited physician availabiliy, says Interior Health

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

Heidi Roy of the Cariboo Jade Shop in Cache Creek with the 3,000 jade boulder, which is now on secure display inside the shop. (Photo credit: Barbara Roden)
Massive jade boulder returns to Cache Creek store six months after daring heist

The 3,000-pound boulder was stolen on Dec. 19, 2020 and found abandoned in the bush a week later

Dr. Albert de Villiers, chief medical health officer for the Interior Health Authority. (Contributed)
Child sex crimes charges against Interior’s top doc won’t impact pandemic response: Dix

Dr. Albert de Villiers is charged with sexual assault and sexual interference

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Most Read