|Health Co-op Chair Debby Zeeben reminds us what an amazing year of accomplishments we have to celebrate|
The Community First Health Coop AGM was held on June 9, 2015 with a good number of members in attendance, After a welcome by Deb Zeeben,, where she gave us highlights for the year, the West Kootenay TEETH Low cost dental clinic is up and running Apple Tree Maternity is a collaboration of doctors, midwives and doulas to support families from pre pregnancy to post, and the Passport for Wellness Health Fair, she introduced our guest speakers for the evening. Julius Halaschek-Wiener, Dr. Trevor Janz and Grace Nakano representing the Kootenay Boundary Division of Family Practice.
The Kootenay Boundary Division of Family Practice has 100% of family physicians in the area developing a vision for sustaining health communities with health care providers in the region.
|Debby introducing our speakers|
Julius spoke about working together with practitioners, IHA and Ministry of Health and local community doctors to look at the best ways to provide care for the community. The Division is 5 years old and operated on consensus and true collaboration, a place where the right people are needed to work together.
He also spoke on the GP for Me initiative to recruit and retain family doctors so that everyone can have a doctor. It also involves improving practice efficiency of practices, optimizing Integrated Primary Community Care, team-based care and a GP for Me Hotline.
Currently there are 4 residents in Trail and 2 in Nelson who are interested in rural medicine and in coming to work in our communities. There will be a community-supported initiative to put together a team to work on recruitment of physicians to our area. There are currently 2 doctors in the Nelson area taking new patients, but they are becoming full quite quickly.
IPCC ( Integrated Primary Community Care) would include a nurse, dietitian, social worker along with the doctor. Team-based care would see a social worker embedded in each medical clinic. Currently there is a social worker at the Nelson Medical Clinic under the direction of Dr. Lee McKay. They are looking at the sustainability of this pilot project. The GP for Me Hotline is given out at emergency if the patient does not have a family doctor or through Mental Health, and when they call the number, a person will try to hook them up with a physician in their area.
These are exciting initiatives as BC looks to envision a new way to work with primary care.
The next speaker was Dr. Trevor Janz, who has been an ER doctor in Nelson for over 25 years and is also responsible for the elderly frail in care homes in the area. He is interested in improving the quality of care for “frail” seniors. His work in the area of polypharmacy was both fascinating and substantiated in making a difference. He explained that polypharmacy is "when the total negative effect of medications is more than the positive effect on the illness”.
Before the work on reducing the medication began in the Kootenay area it was found that 65% of patients in Castlegar, 53% in Trail and 16% in Nelson in long term care homes were using 10 or more medications. Currently that number has now been reduced to 12% in Castlegar, 22% in Trail and 9% in Nelson.
This is an initiative that is across BC and Share Care, where practitioners are conferencing once a month, up to 75 of them, both nurses and doctors, and working on using many experts to make a difference.
It is more difficult he admits, to dealing with seniors in their own homes and in assisted living facilities, but they are chipping away at it.
Grace Nakano is a Nurse Practitioner based with Mental health in Nelson and Trail who support the most vulnerable people with mental health issues on the streets, in shelters and at food banks.
A nurse practitioner will have extended training after nursing and is able to write prescriptions, refer patients to specialists, order x-rays and perform extended nursing duties.
She works with high risk clients and meets them at the Salvation army, Food cupboard, Our Daily Bread or on the streets or shelters. She is also at LV Rogers high school once a week to meet with students who have mental health challenges that are referred by the school counselors.
There was excitement in the air after the presentations as people were optimistic about a new level of care for all.
|Julius shared with us the Strategic Initiatives for 2014-15 including their Core Principles|
The AGM was very brief, and with a quorum present all was approved.
A big thank you was extended to our 3 board members who have filled their terms or have retired from the board, Sharon Browning, Sarah Popoff and Joan Reichardt
A welcome extended to our two new Board members: Karen Hornby, who is a nurse and Erin Morrison who is a health coach. We look forward to a good year for CFHC.
We have one more meeting before September and so we wish you all the great summer and, although we may do one or two more blogs, we too will take some time to relax and recharge.
Marion and Eric