Alberni Medical Clinic closing in early 2012

The Pacific Rim Health Services Co-op is closing its Alberni clinic's doors in early 2012 because of a lack of doctors.

A lack of doctors is forcing the Alberni Medical Clinic to close its doors in early 2012, said Bev Denning, president of the Pacific Rim Health Services Co-operative.

The clinic’s two doctors gave their notice last month and the co-op board has been unsuccessful in recruiting other doctors to replace them.

“I wish it wasn’t this way but this is the way it turned out,” Denning said. “There’s nothing we can do but call it quits.”

The clinic’s 2,000 patients are being given notice of the development. Final closure is expected in February or March of 2012, Denning said.

The doctors are staying in Alberni, but are banding together with other doctors in town to operate another practice. “They’re not unhappy and have been very cooperative,” Denning said. “But it will be easier to share the workload with other doctors, which is what we tried to do here.”

It’s not hard to bring doctors to the Valley, but many want to operate a specialized practice. “There’s just aren’t any GP’s (general practitioners) around,” Denning said.

The Co-op has operated the clinic for five years, and has leased its Elizabeth Street location from the city since July 2010. “It belongs to the city and we’ll have to discontinue the lease and give it back to them.”

The clinic isn’t folding its tent for lack of effort.

The group tried to recruit doctors, even receiving a $12,000 grant-in-aid by the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District to help them recruit a third doctor for the clinic. But it was to no avail.

There were six doctors who passed through the clinic, some of whom stayed in Alberni, Denning said.

The 200-member Co-op is slated to meet early next year to discuss continuing to provide health services. “I won’t say there’s no hope,” Denning said.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

Cherry Creek firefighters mourn former deputy chief

Brian Brick is the second Alberni Valley firefighter to die of work-related cancer in January

Port Alberni to consider the future of McLean Mill

City council will be holding a committee of the whole meeting on Jan. 21

Intern gives Port Alberni’s museum artifacts an update

St. John’s man travelled more than 7,000 kms to assist with curatorial duties

BCHL: Bulldogs best Salmon Arm at home

Bulldogs face Powell River in Sunday matinee Jan. 20; puck drop is 2 p.m.

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

Parole granted for drunk driver who killed B.C. RCMP officer

Kenneth Jacob Fenton will be able to attend alcohol abuse treatment, nearly three years after crash that killed Const. Sarah Beckett

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Vancouver Island senior dies after medical emergency and rollover crash

Incident happened Saturday in Nanaimo on Poplar Street

Most Read