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LETTER: Critical care transportation still operating in Kootenay / Boundary

Dear Editor,

I'm writing in light of concerns expressed in Kootenay Boundary communities about the future of the Critical Care Transport Team. I know there was interest when our President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Robert Halpenny spoke about our strategic direction for transportation at the recent West Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital District Board meeting.

Interior Health Authority (IH) has made addressing challenges in patient transportation across the health authority a top priority and doing so is vital in a rural-remote health authority like ours.

We are currently in discussions with other agencies including BC Ambulance Service, the Provincial Health Service Authority and the provincial Emergency and Health Services Commission regarding critical care transport. This discussion is not just about Kootenay Boundary, but about critical care transportation throughout the health authority recognizing the inherent challenges in serving communities, particularly rural, spread across a vast geographical area.

While the team in the Kootenay Boundary has provided high quality care to patients during transports, we are reviewing the approach to ensure highly skilled clinicians are being used in the best possible way while recognizing there are times when they are not performing transports.

It's important for the public to know that critical care transport services will continue for the Kootenay Boundary; this discussion is about what other options may be available for a high quality and sustainable service that will meet the needs of patients today and into the future.

We do not have any final decisions at this time, but we will be keeping our communities informed as we move forward.

Sincerely,

 


Kelly Murphy

IH Corporate Director,

Medical Administration