I have a friend with a chronic infection in his leg. He has been treated locally by various components of our medical system including hospitalization, referral to New Brunswick and quality care from local speciality clinics. The infection is beat back by various antibiotics only to reoccur. Is is a serious limb threatening condition. Our provincial system is doing its best.
Yesterday’s his wound was oozing puss, he had a high fever and felt awful. A call to the wound clinic resulted in no support and he had no choice but to go to the emergency facility. He arrived at 3 PM and as of last evening at 8:30 PM his wound was still oozing, his fever was increasing and he continued to watch those more urgent come and go. I have not called to see when he was seen by attending care givers.
To be clear, I am not criticizing the hard working staff of the hospital. My family And numerous acquaintances have received exceptional care when needed. What I do have concern about is accessing emergency care or specialists on a timely basis.
It is time to impose a nominal fee at emerg, and eliminate Billy Bob visiting because he can’t eat his chicken nuggets. (Actual case told to me by an emerg room doc). At the same time increase the number and hours of walk in clinics by 30%. People need medical care and without family docs in sufficient numbers many have no choice but to attend walk in clinics.
I know I am over simplifying a solution to a complex problem but we could start by diverting money loaned to friends of the government of the day (..and which would qualify for a commercial bank load) and invest that in medical access.