Rural and Remote Division of Family Practice

Volume 10 - December 2017

Rural Health | NEWS

We are grateful to be working with such dedicated and talented people and for the partnerships we have built. Wishing you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season and a healthy and peaceful New Year.

Volume 10 - December 2017

Feature Physician: Dr. Kate McCarroll

Rural Forum:  Integrating Systems of Care in Our Rural Communities...Taking it Further


New Year...New Opportunities
Physicians across our Division are invited to step forward and contribute to a number of important committees including a Board Development (which will nominate additional Board members) and a Finance Committee.  For more information, please contact Rebecca Lindley

Patient Medical Home Funding Update
Great news to wrap-up 2017! The funds transfer agreement has been signed and the PMH projects will be kicking-off in January 2018. Through locally focused and unique implementations we will support needed change that is rooted in strong, community-based primary care teams that have the potential to be spread to other rural and remote communities.  Wondering what's happening around the province for PMH projects? Click here to learn more

Rural CPD  - Assistant Medical Director Opportunity with UBC
Are you a physician who works in a rural community in British Columbia with a strong passion for lifelong learning, CME/CPD, and practice improvement? Are you interested in improving health and patient care through education and have time for some paid part-time work, in addition to your clinical responsibilities? If so, learn more and maybe even submit your resume and cover letter. The deadline to apply is December 31, 2017. Learn more.

Welcome Leanne Morgan

Leanne Morgan.png

Leanne is the Division's new Director of Operations. She is a very welcome addition to this new role being that the Division has been in a rapid growth phase for the past three years.

Leanne's role is to ensure appropriate infrastructure is in place to support areas such as human resources, finance, operational planning, and contract management. Her role is also about creating efficiencies and finding ways for the Division to better track results and communicate successes.

In her last role, Leanne was the Director of the Support Program with the Canadian Cancer Society where she oversaw the financial support program and the lodge program which provided travel assistance for people facing cancer and were residents of rural and remote communities. "It was rewarding to be involved in a program that helped remove some of the travel barriers.”

When asked what intrigued her about working with the Division, Leanne mentioned, "I admire the work that is being done on the ground by the physicians, and through my role with the Division, I look forward to being able to support the physicians, even if it's in a very small way, so they can do the work that is required on the ground to provide better care and health outcomes for patients."

Feature Physician: Dr. Kate McCarroll

Dr. Kate McCarrol.jpg
Kate with her 6 year old son Max at Mt. Revelstoke National Park

When Dr. Kate McCarroll was asked what piqued her interest to practice in Revelstoke, it was the beautiful community with a strong and stable medical group providing full service care that won her over.

With two young boys, Revelstoke's reputation as being a leader in early childhood education was also a definite draw.

Kate has been practicing in Revelstoke for a year and a half now. Prior to Revelstoke, she practiced in Golden and, prior to that, in Rossland -- both of which she shares are also incredibly beautiful mountain communities with excellent medical colleagues.

Her interest in seniors care combined with the opportunity to share a family practice with her husband has allowed her pursue her interest in seniors medicine in Revelstoke and surrounding communities.

Additionally, Kate has recently taken on the role as Physician Lead for the Revelstoke Chapter and is working with the project coordinator on the community engagement project for the PMH initiative.

She is also involved with the Residential Care initiative both through the Division and also with her role as the Medical Director of Long Term Care for Interior Health West. 

She shares that she loves the sense of community and team work in rural medicine. "We have an incredibly supportive group that encourages the individual strengths of each physician and this allows some flexibility in the way we all practice."

Her advice to a physician considering rural and remote practice is: The work life integration in a rural community is well worth sacrificing some of the "conveniences" of urban life.

When Kate and her husband aren't working they often attempt to do some sort of outdoor activity with their boys -- skiing, swimming, hiking, camping or biking depending on the season. "I say 'attempt' because with a 6 and a 3 year old, we have to keep our expectations realistic!"

Fun and adventure ahead! Kate and her husband are planning a backcountry ski trip this winter which she is very excited about as it will be a first for her.

Rural Forum:  Integrating Systems of Care in Our Rural Communities...Taking it Further

"We build too many walls and not enough bridges."

"Our current system is not tweakable. We need a revolution in our health care system."

Many stories, successes and the unique challenges of rural and remote medicine were shared with over 70 physicians, staff and partners from across the province who attended the Fall Division Forum held on November 30 and December 1 in Vancouver.

The goal of the forum was to collectively consider the Ministry of Health's Strategic Agenda, from the grass-roots in-community perspective and share how we are moving this work forward in and across our rural communities; and, to build on our respective assets in supporting strong integrated systems of care in rural BC.

The first day of the Forum provided an opportunity for physicians and partners to contribute to facilitated conversations on rural maternity services;  supporting PRAs and IMGs; primary care in First Nations communities; integrating social workers in primary care; community paramedicine; Pathways and Health Data Coalition; rural seniors services;  and, specialist visits. The day was topped-off with a trio of young entertainers and a delicious west coast dinner.

The second day provided an opportunity to share the highlights from the previous day's conversations, and to learn about the Ministry's Strategic Agenda. The system redesign has a strong focus on team-based care and will require creativity and innovation to co-create primary systems of community care -- care that will be patient-centred, coordinated, seamless, and accessible. More information will be coming in early 2018.

Jennifer Mervyn’s presentation on the CYMHSU Collaborative highlighted the legacy projects led by children, youth and their families, who worked alongside physicians, the RCMP, school districts representatives, and community representatives. From telehealth projects and the development of ER protocols, to trauma-informed practice training sessions and impactful youth-developed videos -- we can all be very proud of our efforts.

A lively 'Fish Bowl' conversation that allowed attendees to stand up, speak up, and move into a hot-seat, focused on how can we best support physicians starting in rural practice. Lots of ideas were shared including making sure there are good supports in place for the physician's family members, the importance of mentorship, encouraging new physicians to be both confident and competent, making the gold standard CPD courses part of the recruitment package, and many more.

The Forum ended with small group regional discussions. These discussions provided an opportunity to discuss takeaways and next steps within and across our communities and organizations. 

The forum session notes and evaluations are in the process of being compiled and analyzed. Further information will be shared in early 2018. 

A sincere thank you to all of the attendees, the event coordinators, and the presenters. Together, we continue to make amazing things happen.