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HomeNewsProvince announces steps to streamline primary care services

Province announces steps to streamline primary care services

A plan has been unveiled by the province to shift thousands of people away from the provincial health care waitlist and connect them with a family doctor or nurse practitioner.

Health Minister Adrian Dix told the media today (Thursday) 70 new primary care attachment coordinators will be able to match people who are currently on BC’s Health Connect Registry to a provider.

Starting next week (April 17), the attachment co-ordinators will connect people who are on the list to physicians who have space on their patient panels.

The co-ordinators will then examine the complexity of patients and how long they’ve been on the registry to refer them to practitioners who are accepting new patients.

In addition, family members will also be referred to the same health-care practitioner.

Digital tools are also being implemented to the Health Connect Registry, including allowing people to modify their registration if their health status changes.

Dix stated roughly 310,000 people are currently on the Health Connect Registry and about 67,000 people have been connected to doctors or are close to being matched via the online service.

Last summer, a new Provincial Attachment system was developed by the Ministry of Health.

This included Doctors of BC and the Nurse Practitioners of BC to jointly announce the Health Connect, Panel, Clinic and Provider registries.

Since 2018/19, close to 410,000 people have been attached in BC through the primary care strategy.

This includes an expansion to primary care capacity, which includes the following:

• 239 family physician contracts active under the New to Practice Incentives Program;

• 236 nurse practitioners working in longitudinal primary care under service contracts.

• 4,089 family physicians now registered with Longitudinal Family Physician Payment Model;

• 700+ additional family physicians working in longitudinal primary care, year over year between December 2022 and December 2023.

There are currently between 800,000 and 900,000 British Columbians without doctors.

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