Physician recruitment program a go

Medical professional recruitment and retention program funded

The Cariboo Chilcotin Regional Hospital District (CCRHD) directors have approved $30,000 in funding for a medical professional recruitment and retention program in 100 Mile House.

At its March 20 board meeting, the money was allocated to allow the hiring of a physician and health professional recruitment advisor to facilitate the program, as well as identical funding for similar programs in Williams Lake and Quesnel.

The advisor will develop a Red Carpet Program as a three-year pilot project.

CCRHD director Al Richmond says no taxes will be raised as a result of the allocations, which were moved from reserves.

The Cariboo Regional District chair adds he is looking forward to see how Dr. Rod Dickey of 100 Mile and other physicians involved in developing the original proposals now move forward with the programs to assist the Interior Health Authority to attract and keep health professionals.

“I think Dr. Dickey is pretty happy we were able to provide that money.”

While it was not an unanimous vote, he notes the motion moved forward and the majority of the board members felt it was something worth supporting.

“Our rationale for that is it puts someone in our community promoting and lobbying for our community, rather than relying on a larger entity lobbying for some 100-plus positions they have vacant [elsewhere].

“We need more health-care professionals and doctors here.”

The CCRHD will also submit the issue of recruitment and retention for discussion at the upcoming North Central Local Government Association convention May 2-4 in 100 Mile.