Letters to the Editor

Health centre wait times

I have visited our Oceanside Medical Health Center on three different occasions and was totally unsatisfied.

Unless you have a broken bone or you are bleeding profusely, you are on a three-hour waiting list for one over-worked doctor. The nurses or the admin staff are equally overworked and try their best to keep patients at ease by reassuring a doctor will be with you soon, but when care is needed, soon is never soon enough, especially after three hours.

I have witnessed parents walking away after waiting as long as I have, three hours, with children who have fallen and possible concussion, possible broken rib, high fever, and parents being very upset when told to go to the hospital either in Nanaimo or Port Alberni after being there for three hours, desperate for help for their child.

So then, my question is, what constitutes a medical emergency, where do they draw the line and who determines and are they trained to decide on the spot if someone is going to go into a seizure because of high fever, or to determine the severity of the fall and concussion to have this child wait three hours to be examined?

I’ve watched an elderly man come in, he chopped off his finger, blood all over his wrapping, he was there for over two hours waiting for the doctor to help him. We left before he was treated, so we never saw how long he actually had to wait. My point is now, how was this not determined as a broken bone or bleeding profusely emergency that needed immediate attention?

There is a considerable amount of new development in the Oceanside area, growing population, young and retired families, and we are in need of better health services.

I thought the idea of this medical center was not to eliminate the walk-in services we had, but to better serve the taxpaying community with better health care?

Vinka Perzina

Parksville

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