The Good News Bears’ spin

For the last decade, good news about health care locally has been scarce.

For the last decade, good news about health care locally has been scarce.

Recently, Dr. Brian Goldman, celebrated Nelson’s Kootenay Lake Hospital as having “top notch maternal care for such a small community.” Goldman’s evaluation went across Canada on CBC’s White Coat, Black Art.

Goldman’s visit to Nelson followed an announcement this summer about a long-awaited enhanced eye care program. Also, patients soon will have CT scanner access plus a modernized emergency room at KLH.

Locals will no longer travel to retinal specialists in Cranbrook or Kelowna, or spend countless hours driving to Trail to lie briefly in a CT scanner — at least during daytime hours.

Liberal Health Minister Mike de Jong pronounced: “Improving access to treatment is excellent news for residents in the Kootenay Boundary. Our government is committed to providing access to the greatest range of health services possible in the Kootenays.”

Meanwhile Norman Embree, Interior Health Authority board chair, commented: “I’m pleased we are bringing specialists to Kootenay Boundary.”

IHA’s director of diagnostic imaging, Thalia Vesterback, was more specific: “This is about trying to bring care closer to home. We are trying to reduce trips people have to take to Trail by offering them services closer to where they live.”

Positive. Reassuring.

Conveniently, each Good News Bear’s focus ignores one elephant: residential and emergency surgery. Recognized universally as best practice in medicine, surgeons both lead and assist medical teams — being a vital component in emergency care for a community of Nelson’s size.

We have a double standard of care. On the one hand, when applied to diagnostics, maternal or eye care, access is considered important. On the other hand, the essential service of general and emergency surgery, the immediacy for these services is omitted.

Truly, these bears are whistling past the graveyard.

Access is commended as a priority. So why wouldn’t the same standard of access be applied equally to patients requiring general surgery? Moreover, conveniently disregarded in the spin, is the surgeon’s important role in emergencies during the “golden hour.” What about the consequences of not having an emergency backup surgeon in maternity cases? Ignored too, are hundreds of trips people make in seeing general surgeons for consultations and surgery in Trail.

Dr. Goldman says in his review of maternal care in Nelson: The watchword is cooperation.

KLH needs to broaden its “watchword of cooperation.” We need to tell Premier Christy Clark, Minister de Jong, and Mr. Embree: general and emergency surgery is necessary in Nelson — identify, establish this essential elephant the Good News Bears forgot.

Glyn Humphries

Nelson

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

RDCK: spring flooding financial relief available

The provincial funds are for those affected by flooding in May and early June

Pamela Allain, Laura Gellatly join the Nelson Star

Allain oversees Black Press’s West Kootenay papers, while Gellatly is the Star’s new publisher

Pivot Point Learning Centre launches community classroom in Nelson

The classes are focused on students with diverse needs

School District 8: about 25% of students returned to schools last month

The number of students who participated in part-time classes was below the provincial average

Oyxgen Art Centre launches virtual exhibition of emerging artists

If I Can’t Dance To It, It’s Not My Revolution is on until Aug. 15

A list of charge rates or Crown referrals from police oversight bodies across Canada

Here are the rates of charges or referrals to the Crown from their most recent annual reports or online data

Man who rammed gate near Trudeau residence with truck faces multiple charges

The man, who police have not yet officially identified, will be charged with multiple offences

All community COVID-19 outbreaks declared over in B.C.

Abbotsford manufacturer cleared by Dr. Bonnie Henry

Kelowna RCMP commander calls for more nurses during wellness checks after complaint

Southeast District Commander wants to increase Police and Crisis Team program

‘Tarantula moth’ spotted in broad daylight on Vancouver Island

Polyphemus moths are one of the largest insects in B.C.

B.C. First Nations vow to keep fighting after Trans Mountain pipeline appeal denied

Squamish Nation, Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Coldwater Indian Band made the application

‘Queue jumpers’ not welcome in B.C. as COVID-19 U.S. cases rise: Horgan

Premier Horgan said he’s heard concerns that Americans have stopped at Vancouver hotels instead of heading to their destination

US officer resigns after photos, connected to death of black man in 2019, surface

Elijah McClain died, last summer, after police placed him in a chokehold

Most Read