A “town hall” meeting scheduled for next month will address the movement of clinical pathologists’ services from the Campbell River Hospital to Victoria.
Citizens for Quality Health Care (CQHC) and the Council for Canadians (COC) are holding the meeting on Feb. 9th.
Richard Hagensen, chairperson for CQHC Campbell River Chapter, says the services have been transferred to Vancouver Island Clinical Pathology Consulting Corporation.
“In other words, any clinical pathology testing of samples previously done by the pathologist in our Campbell River Hospital is now being done in Victoria,” says Hagensen. “It’s resulted in a lot of delays in people getting their results back and for the ability for the lab assistants and technologists to consult with the pathologist. There are still pathologists here but they’re not doing the clinical pathology part of it.”
Hagensen adds that there has been a trend towards centralization for some hospital services, resulting in a slow down of the system.
“We don’t see that as improving services, we see that as decreasing services to our hospitals. We have brand new hospitals here. When they came into being, the communities were promised we would have all the same services that were in the old hospitals.”
Those further up the Island are affected by this movement as well.
“The Campbell River Hospital services basically the whole North Island, there’s just medical centres in some of the small communities. A lot of the people do have to come down from the North Island to get tests down here, so it affects them too,” Hagensen says.
The Comox Strathcona Regional Hospital Board and Campbell River city council have asked for action to be taken to return clinical pathology services to the Campbell River Hospital.
All are welcome to join in on the discussion at the “town hall” meeting on Feb. 9th from 2 pm to 4 pm at the Campbell River Sportsplex.
Those who attend can share their own experiences while learning from senior pathologists at the Campbell River and Comox Valley Hospitals, lab staff and doctors in the community.
Admission is by donation.
We have reached out to MLA Claire Trevena and Island Health for comment.