Health centre is a white elephant

We already have most of the services to be offered at the new health centre

If we build it, they must come.

This must have been the thinking behind the new health care facility presently being built.

The projected operating cost of $15.5 million includes only $2.8 million in new money and that current service providers will be encouraged to move into the new facility.

What if they do not want to be encouraged? Will their funding be cut? Or will they be enticed to move with promise of greater rewards? Why not? After all it’s only tax payers’ money.

Speaking of which, our school system is also funded by tax dollars, it is equally strapped for funds and the school board has been contemplating the closure of schools, specifically KSS.

How much more efficient it would have been to close Oceanside Middle School and convert that building to accommodate the health care facility.

We now have readily accessible labs in Parksville and Qualicum Beach and an X-Ray/Ultrasound facility which is conveniently located for residents of both municipalities.

Almost half of the Qualicum Beach residents are seniors, many are ambulatory but no longer drive, and they can presently walk, with or without their walking aids, to the lab which is very busy most of the time.

The X-ray facility is equally busy, but the floor space allocated to it in the original design of the new facility is considerably smaller with less equipment than the present location, meaning longer wait times.

How are people going to get to the new facility? Will there be a new bus service or a shuttle running every 30 minutes?

It would almost seem that the intent is to discourage people from seeking these services and to so minimize health care costs. If VIHA really wants to discourage people from using this white elephant, why not build it on top of Mt. Arrowsmith?

Hans Rysdyk

Qualicum Beach