Wildfire Update

July 18, 2017

Dear Members:

As you know, BC is in a state of emergency due to wildfires that have forced thousands of people to evacuate their homes.

Among them are more than 60 physicians who live and work in 100 Mile House, Williams Lake and surrounding areas.  On behalf of the profession, I want to acknowledge the strength and courage of these physicians who are looking after their families and their patients during such a difficult time.

I also want to personally thank the many physicians in surrounding communities who are going above and beyond to provide clinical space so that displaced colleagues can continue to treat their patients and other patients who had to leave their homes. Thank you as well to the Divisions of Family Practice and the Medical Staff Associations who are working with the Health Authorities to co-ordinate this important work, and to the networks of physicians who are helping to find homes for  colleagues and and their families during this evacuation period.

Here is some information on supports available to impacted physicians and for those who want to help:

  • If you have evacuated your home and have insurance through Doctors of BC, e-mail info@mgins.ca or call 1-866-806-4467 for information on your Mardon home or medical office insurance coverage.
  • The Central Interior Rural, Thompson Region, Central Okanagan, Shuswap North Okanagan, and Prince George Divisions of Family Practice are working with Interior and Northern Health Authorities to co-ordinate clinic space for use by displaced physicians and additional support to meet the needs of evacuated patients.  For more information, contact your local division: Central Interior Rural– Trevor Barnes – tbarnes@divisionsbc.ca – 250-296-4432; Thompson Region – Brenda Phillips – thompsonregion@divisionsbc.ca – 250-372-1621; Central Okanagan – Tristan Smith – tsmith@divisionsbc.ca – 250 718-4533; Shuswap North Okanagan – Tracey Kirkman  – tkirkman@divisionsbc.ca  – 250-833-6826; Prince George – Megan Hunter – mhunter@divisionsbc.ca – 250-561-0125.
  • Physicians working in hospitals and other facilities should contact Interior Health and Northern Health if they are seeking support or offering to help. Please connect with Dr Alan Stewart – alan.stewart@interiorhealth.ca or Dr Ronald Chapman – ronald.chapman@northernhealth.ca.
  • If you need emotional support for what you and/or your family are experiencing, please connect with the Physician Health Program, a confidential service for you that operates 24/7. The contact number is 1-800-663-6729.
  • For physicians with outstanding questions, connect with Doctors of BC Regional Advisor and Advocate, Brent Weiss, at bweiss@doctorsofbc.ca or e-mail me directly at president@doctorsofbc.ca.

It is inspiring to see how our profession comes together to support each other and our communities in difficult times like these. Thank you to everyone involved for your hard work and dedication.

Stay safe!

Dr Trina Larsen Soles, M.Sc. M.D. FRRMS