Over 1,100 Kamloops residents sign on to 8-1-1 doctor wish list

By Chad Klassen / James Peters
November 8, 2016 - 11:10am Updated: November 8, 2016 - 6:36pm

KAMLOOPS — Health Minister Terry Lake says, one week after the 811 HealthLink BC line went live allowing Kamloops residents to queue up for access to primary health care, more than 1100 people have already signed up.

The phone line allows people without a family doctor or access to primary care to put their names on an actively-managed list.

Lake says he believes the service is helping the community "turn the corner."

"As we add physicians through the GP-locum program, as we add the clinics in the Northills Mall and on Tranquille, and as we add nurses as well, we'll be able to attach those patients directly to primary health care."

As many as 30,000 Kamloops residents don't have a family doctor.

Lake says the response to the 811 line speaks to the challenging situation right now, but also lends cause for optimism.

"It does point to the challenge that we've faced over the last number of years. But I think it also shows that there's a light at the end of the tunnel. We see the six family practitioner residents staying in our region, we're recruiting more physicians all the time. So I actually think we're turning the corner on this."

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