Fort St. James Mayor voices need in healthcare at annual UBCM

Fort St. James Mayor, Rob MacDougall along with District councillors attended the annual UBCM in Victoria from Sept. 26 – 29.

  • Nov. 2, 2016 4:00 p.m.

Barbara Latkowski

Caledonia Courier

Fort St. James Mayor, Rob MacDougall along with District councilors attended the annual UBCM in Victoria from Sept. 26 – 29.

“It was a great opportunity to have our voice heard and have the ear of the Premier, MLA’s and ministers all in one location,” MacDougall said.

UBCM (Union of British Columbia Municipalities) was formed to provide a common voice for local governments.

The convention continues to be the main forum for UBCM policy-making and provides local governments of all sizes and areas of the province to come together, voice their opinions, share experiences and take a united position.

“It was interesting to see some of the challenges in various communities that are similar to ours,” MacDougall said.

“It was great to be able to network with various communities and to be able to talk about the same issues and hear about others solutions from rural communities.”

This year, Mayor MacDougall and Council came with a focus.

“For us here in Fort St. James, it’s all about primary care. We met with Northern Health, the minister of Health and with the Premier, Christy Clark, regarding a replacement of the Fort St James Medical Clinic and Stuart Lake Hospital,” MacDougall said.

Fort St. James Medical Clinic is currently operated by the Fort St. James Primary Care Society. They are funded in part by the Northern Health Authority.

It has been determined that the current clinic is far too small to support local needs in terms of office space and examination rooms.

According to District, the hospital was constructed as a temporary facility in the early seventies and it is now 20 years past due for replacement.

NHA has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Society to the effect that NHA will provide a new, or leased and renovated building for a “primary care home” to house a combined clinic, health unit and other health services under one roof.

The Hospital District has agreed to fund a portion of the cost of renovating a temporary location.

NHA intends to construct a new hospital; facility to be combined with a new primary care home when funding becomes available.

Council voiced their need at UBCM, that the Premier’s Office does consider the need for a new hospital/primary care home in Fort St. James.

“We are in desperate need,” MacDougall said. “But it appears that we are now one of three highest priorities right now.”

It is Council’s understanding that Fort St. James Hospital is next on the replacement list for the Stuart Nechako Regional Hospital District.

“We put in our ask and I think now we can be very optimistic about the future,” MacDougall said.




Just Posted

More B.C. ambulance service needed in the North: Hospital chief of staff

Fort St. James physicians talk about the need for easier access to healthcare

Broken axle caused New Hazelton train derailment: TSB

It could happen again without a different way to inspect trains

Cullen remains uncertain about political future

Says he’ll make decision in early March

Terrace resident’s bill banning single-use plastics introduced in Ottawa

MP Nathan Cullen’s presented Ben Korving’s private member’s bill Wednesday

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

VIDEO: Iconic ‘snow cone’ takes shape at B.C. park near Clearwater

Snow cone forming at Wells Gray Provincial Park one that would make Disney’s Queen Elsa proud

Pink Shirt Day a reminder to ‘T.H.I.N.K.’ before posting on social media

‘Be Kind’ message on shirts sold for anti-bullying activities of Wednesday, Feb. 27

A ‘warm embrace’ for grieving parents at funeral of seven young fire victims

Mourners offered love and support to Kawthar Barho, mother of seven children

Indigenous leaders, politicians say Trans Mountain report flawed

The National Energy Board has endorsed an expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline a second time

UPDATE: Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

Legislation to protect B.C. farmland comes into effect

Regulations enhance food security, encourage long-term farming

Have you heard the legend of Shuswaggi, the Shuswap Lake monster?

Witness accounts as old as 1904, and as recent as 2018, place a creature in the lake’s depths

UPDATE: B.C. ticket holder winner of $25.9-million Lotto Max jackpot

Next draw set for Mar. 1 with an estimated jackpot of $10 million

B.C.-based ‘Team Tardi’ brings home gold in junior curling worlds

In a 9-4 victory over Switzerland, a Langley-based curling team earned its 2nd straight world title

Most Read