Category Archives: Health

Changes Coming To The Cortes Medical Clinic

British Columbia’s health care crisis has reached Cortes Island. A number of complex factors led to the resignation of all three doctors working out of the Cortes Island Medical Clinic. Their contract ends on Sunday, March 31, 2024

“The  physicians that we’ve had in our physicians group are moving on to do things in their own lives. They’re starting practices elsewhere and it no longer fits for them to come here,” explained Bernice McGowan, on behalf of the Cortes Community Health Association (CCHA) board.

“We will not be shutting the doors of the clinic on April 1st.  That’s not in the foreseeable future. If our physicians leave, the worst case scenario is that we have a whole bunch of locums coming and we’ve been in this position before, where the only people that we had covering the practice were locums.” 

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Eby talks transport, toxic drug crisis and short-term rentals at economic summit

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Transportation, short-term rentals and disorder related to the toxic drug crisis in city centres were the top issues raised with Premier David Eby at the State of the Island Economic Summit on Thursday. 

After addressing the crowd at Nanaimo’s conference centre, Eby fielded questions and concerns from business and industry leaders, politicians and communities on the key issues hurting economic development across Vancouver Island. 

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Province proposes more restrictions to public drug use; advocate fears this will force people back into the shadows

Editor’s note: While the examples in this story are from Victoria, a July 2023 BC Government press release named the Greater Campbell River Health Area (which includes outlying areas like Cortes and Quadra Islands, as well as the city of Campbell River) among the six worst health areas in BC for unregulated drug deaths. 

By Alexandra Mehl, Ha-Shilth-Sa, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Victoria, B.C. – On Oct. 5 the B.C. government announced its proposed amendments drug-use regulations, which would put illicit use more in alignment with the limits of tobacco, alcohol and cannabis in public places.

On Jan. 31 of this year, the province decriminalized personal possession of opioids (heroin, morphine, and fentanyl), crack and powder cocaine, methamphetamine (meth), and MDMA (ecstasy) in amounts of 2.5 grams and under.

Continue reading Province proposes more restrictions to public drug use; advocate fears this will force people back into the shadows

Curing the Most Deadly Communicable Disease on the Planet

Editor’s note: A health warning for our area as well the urban centres mentioned.

By Michelle Gamage, The Tyee, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The hepatitis C Virus kills more people than most other communicable diseases, including AIDS and tuberculosis, says Dr.  Brian Conway, medical director of the Vancouver Infectious Diseases  Centre. Conway was recently named an Elimination Champion for his work fighting the disease.

This excludes COVID-19 which, as a generational pandemic gets measured differently by infectious disease experts, Conway adds. 

HCV killed 290,000 people globally in 2019 according to the World Health Organization, including 1,162 Canadians. 

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BC’s Rural Emergency Room Crisis

An alarming trend to watch.

Editor’s note: During a protest over closures at North Island ERs, Adriane Gear VP of the BC Nurses Union told CHEK NEWS, “Our nurses are very worried. The Campbell River Hospital, I understand at any given time could be at 140%, 145% capacity, and at the same time there’s maybe only 60% to 70% of the nurses that would be normally scheduled to work.”  

By Michelle Gamage, The Tyee, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The province’s emergency rooms are in crisis.

ERs across the Lower Mainland have made the news for being at capacity and past their breaking points. This overcrowding led to the death of an infant in 2020 and a senior in 2022.

Doctors have even been urging people to stay away and seek help elsewhere. In the Lower Mainland one in 10 patients are leaving ERs without seeing a doctor, according to reporting by CTV. 

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