The Esquimalt Treatment Centre at 918 Esquimalt Rd. closed at the end of 2018, leaving Esquimalt with just one walk-in clinic (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)

Esquimalt explores options amidst doctor shortage crisis

A recent report found that between Esquimalt and Westshore, 36,000 people don’t have a family doctor

The Township of Esquimalt is researching strategies to combat the severe doctor shortage it faces.

In a committee of the whole meeting, Esquimalt council heard a report from the South Island Division of Family Practice (SIDFP), which stated that “the need for new primary care services in Esquimalt is immediate.”

This report comes forward following the recent closure of one of the two walk-in clinics in the area, and the relocation of one physician to the Victoria area.

This leaves the 17,000 residents in Esquimalt with one walk-in clinic, and a combined Esquimalt-Westshore population of 36,000 people without a family physician.

READ MORE: Esquimalt needs urgent health care facility, mayor says

The SIDFP recommended that both short term (in the next six months) and medium term (in the next 1-2 years) spaces need to be made available.

During committee, Esquimalt Mayor Barbara Desjardins noted that the letter followed ongoing discussions with Island Health and the South Island General Practitioners Division.

“What they have identified is that Esquimalt is in crisis. We do need more practitioners and they have sent that message forward and made requests to the province,” Desjardins said, adding that she could not give out details on these provincial requests at the time.

ALSO READ: Victoria doctor forced into early retirement as specialist moves into rental space

Council also spoke of the importance of making room for physicians within the Township

“As Esquimalt is changing and shifting, we need to make sure that we are addressing that there is commercial space available for those facilities,” Desjardins said.

Currently, research conducted on behalf of the Township and the Fraternal Order of Eagles is exploring more details about the need for physicians and possible solutions, with a final report expected on April 15.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


Send a Tweet: @NicoleCrescenzi

Like us on Facebook  

Just Posted

Sooke kayak incident could have been averted: expert

Training is key, says local trainer

Autism support dog helps Langford boy hold his head high

Family shares story for Autism Awareness Month

Plans to clear-cut old-growth near Port Renfrew causes an environmental outcry

Groups call logging a provincial government ‘blind spot’

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

Limits on chinook sport fishing could cause devastating economic ripples

Vancouver Island fishing guides concerned over salmon sport catch reductions to save declining stock

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Howe Sound Queen sailing toward retirement

Vessel now up for auction ends regular runs between Crofton and Vesuvius at the beginning of June

B.C. senior sentenced for sexually abusing special-needs granddaughter

73-year-old Cortes Island man will go to jail for three years

VicPD seize knife, bear spray from youth

Youth issued large fine for weapons

Sentencing delayed for man who attacked Vancouver Island police dog

Uno later recovered from his injury and returned to work in Victoria

Police probe eight fires set at B.C. elementary school

Nanaimo RCMP say fires appear to have been set intentionally

Inquest into Port Hardy police shooting moved to Campbell River

Family disappointed James Hayward coroner’s inquest rescheduled hours away

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Most Read