Attracting New Physicians to British Columbia

The BC Liberals made an election promise to ensure every BC resident had access to a Family Doctor. They failed to achieve this promise and even abandoned it. It is time for the BC Green Party to do what the Liberals failed to do. This can be done through offering a number of layered initiatives such as student loan forgiveness for BC students born in BC or graduating from a BC University as long as they practise in BC for a minimum of 10 consecutive years after their graduation and medical licensing to practise. The personal and business tax incentives such as student loans being treated as a capital loss while they practise in BC for provincial tax purposes; business and property tax incentives for the setting up of new clinics or walk-ins etc. My opinion is that "you can pay some now or pay a lot more later" if we do not address this physician shortage and if you offer a number of layered incentives you will attract a sufficient number of well trained physicians to set-up practises in BC. You can even set geographical preferences. Something else that should be considered is incentives to attract private medical clinics. Case in point, I can now wait months for an MRI or go to a private MRI clinic (just as professional) if I pay. For those BC residents who have the financial resources to avail themselves of a wider variety of private medical services, they should be offered that option in BC. It might even reduce the wait time for the publicly funded system. More needs to be done in BC to ensure at minimum (1) every BC resident should have access to a family doctor and there be significant reductions in wait times for diagnostic and routine surgeries. Chris Price

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