Concerns over Regina’s inner city clinic mount as doctors leave the practice
When the Meadow Primary Health Care Centre opened last July, it was a first of its kind in Regina – catering to inner city neighborhoods, providing extended hours for immediate care, and alleviating some of the pressure from the Pasqua Hospital across the street. Less than a year later, there is concern whether the doors will stay open – with one physician slated to leave by next week, and another two by the end of next month.
“I’m not sure it poses a challenge. We’ll have to go through the recruitment process and make sure we’re filling those gaps,” said Sheila Anderson of the Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region.
One doctor who didn’t want to be identified, told Global News that working 80-hour weeks were not out of the norm.
“I would certainly say that all of our family physicians in RQHR, and across the province, work really hard. I would say that the Meadow has a unique clientele. That’s our inner city population, who has really high demands,” said Anderson.
The doctor who we spoke to, attributed their resignations to mismanagement. A third-party known as the Regina Physician Group was in charge when the clinic first opened. Since April, it has changed hands – now RQHR is in charge.
The facility typically sees 1,800 patients each month – 640 of them call doctors there, their family physicians. Now, a big concern for those patients, is wait times.
“That’s got to be a problem. If there are fewer doctors, you wait longer to see them, and doctors don’t have as much time to deal with you. I was dealt with very thoroughly today and I appreciate that kind of service,” said Roy Zinkhan, a patient.
To that, RQHR says they expect to be fully staffed again by the fall. In the interim, they have hired one temporary physician to ensure services are maintained as best they can.