Victoria: Despite NDP promises to improve access to family doctors, the number of British Columbians unattached to a primary care provider has increased by more than 200,000 people since the NDP came to power.
“The NDP campaigned on the promise of increasing access to primary care providers in B.C., and yet nearly five years later access has decreased and more people are without a family doctor or nurse practitioner than ever before,” said Shirley Bond, Official Opposition Leader and BC Liberal Critic for Health. “If the goal is to get more people access to a doctor, then the NDP is failing spectacularly– they’re actually moving backwards. With 2,600 doctors nearing retirement across the province, the problem will only continue to worsen unless this government takes immediate and decisive action.”
The family doctors shortage is being felt across the province and over 12,000 people have signed a petition started in Victoria expressing their concerns and calling on the NDP government to take action. Meanwhile, the NDP promised to open a second medical school at SFU’s Surrey campus and yet it was nowhere to be found in this year’s budget.
“This lack of primary care providers is just one more symptom of a growing problem in our healthcare system,” added Bond. “We have watched as the opioid crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, the paramedic shortage, and other factors have put increasing strain on medical professionals and health resources in our province. The lack of family doctors only adds to this stress, as people are forced to go to walk-in clinics or our overwhelmed emergency rooms for basic care. It is past time that the NDP take action and ensure the quality healthcare British Columbians need and
deserve.”