Government is transforming everyday health care for people living in the Oceanside region by establishing a primary care network, which will bring additional resources and strengthened support to the region.
“As part of our government’s primary care strategy, we’re making life healthier and better for everyone in B.C. Through primary care networks, we are providing team-based health care and are giving people a seamless patient-centred experience that is responsive to the unique needs of each community,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “The primary care network in Oceanside will bring meaningful change in the communities by helping more local residents access the comprehensive care they need and deserve, closer to home.”
The Ministry of Health will provide approximately $4.6 million in annual funding to the primary care network once it is fully operational.
Over the next four years, residents of Oceanside will benefit from more than 23 full-time equivalent health providers who will provide better access to primary care. This includes nurse practitioners, family physicians and allied health professionals such as registered nurses, social workers, occupational therapists and a clinical pharmacist
The Oceanside primary care network will see community partners working together to ensure thousands of people have access to comprehensive, co-ordinated and team-based primary care services for all of their day-to-day health-care needs in the region.
The network will provide a full range of accessible, everyday health services that will better support patients and providers and will service Parksville, Qualicum Beach and Oceanside rural that includes Errington, Coombs to Bowser.
The network was developed to better meet the specific needs of the community and to strengthen services identified as high priority. These include:
- better access to chronic disease and chronic pain management;
- improved access to mild- to-moderate mental health and substance use services;
- better co-ordinated services for families and seniors who are frail and people with complex health issues; and
- culturally safe care for Indigenous peoples.
For people and families, it means getting faster, better access to their primary care team or provider, even on evenings and weekends, as well as being connected to appropriate services and supports in the community.
Over the next four years, the Oceanside network will work to attach 11,950 patients to a consistent primary care provider in the region, while also providing team-based and culturally safe care to local residents.
In addition, a traditional knowledge keeper and mental health and substance use social worker will be recruited in support of Indigenous health. For Indigenous peoples, this will mean more co-ordinated and culturally safe primary care support.
“Although Oceanside innovated on acute-care emergencies, residents without a family doctor have struggled to get easier access to primary health care services,” said Sheila Malcolmson, MLA for Nanaimo. “Through the new primary care network in the region, more health-care providers will be recruited and will work as a team to provide improved and increased access to care to residents in Oceanside.”
The Oceanside primary care network is a result of a partnership between the Ministry of Health, Island Health, the Oceanside Division of Family Practice and Qualicum First Nation and Snaw-Naw-As First Nation.
To learn more about the Province’s primary health-care strategy, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2018PREM0034-001010
To learn more about the Province’s strategy to increase the number of nurse practitioners, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2018HLTH0034-000995
To learn more about the Province’s strategy to recruit and retain more family medicine graduates, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2018HLTH0052-001043
Two backgrounders follow.