Although I spent most of my career in hospitals as a supplier of orthopaedic implants, we have had almost no personal experience as patients in our health care system. Recently we have had some experience and despite the illness involved, we have been very impressed with the system.
Two visits to the Oceanside Health Care Centre in Parksville were very positive experiences. The facility is excellent, well equipped and well run. The nursing staff were efficient, knowledgeable, caring, and thoughtful. The two staff doctors with whom we dealt were also very good. We are fortunate to have this great facility in Oceanside.
We also had occasion to partake of the BC Paramedic Service. My favourite girl fell ill just before New Years and I called 911. The two paramedics arrived promptly and were very impressive. Gentle, thoughtful, and competent. This is a wonderful service. (As an aside, not everyone gives their partner an ambulance ride for their wedding anniversary).
If you have had occasion to visit the Emergency Room at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital, you will know that it is an amazing, very large, state of the art department. Certainly the best I’ve ever seen and I’ve seen many in my career. The staff are terrific, too. Nanaimo has become the major trauma centre on the island outside of Victoria and they certainly have the facility to handle it.
With my sweetheart now on a ward I can comment on nearly two weeks of the health care system. The Registered Nurses are fantastic. On the 3rd floor at Nanaimo Regional, they are all young, mostly in their 20’s or early 30’s. They too, are efficient, knowledgeable, compassionate, and charming. They all work 12 hour shifts and seem to really enjoy their jobs.
The Health Care Aids are delightful. Not a glamorous job, for sure, but they do the tough task of moving patients, helping them with hygiene and daily needs. These ladies have even helped feed our patient. All of the aides we have encountered do their job with dedication, enthusiasm and a smile. They are the unsung heroes.
Finally, we have interfaced with three Hospitalists. These are doctors who only work in the hospital. General Practitioners or Family physicians by training, they work on salary and look after in-patients. As a result, it is unnecessary for your own doctor to visit patients in the hospital. It’s a relatively new specialty. In Nanaimo, the Hospitalist service began about 13 years ago and it seems to work really well.
Complain about the Health Care System in BC? Not us. Our experience has been first class.
Kudos to all the doctors, nurses, aides, and paramedics.