Adrian Dix with NDP candidates Bob D-Eith (Maple Ridge-Mission) and Lisa Beare (Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows) at the Urgent and Primary Care Centre at Haney Place Mall. (Special to The News)

Adrian Dix with NDP candidates Bob D-Eith (Maple Ridge-Mission) and Lisa Beare (Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows) at the Urgent and Primary Care Centre at Haney Place Mall. (Special to The News)

Dix visits Maple Ridge’s new Urgent and Primary Care Centre

There still aren’t enough doctors to staff facility – Meadus

Health Minister Adrian Dix was in Maple Ridge on Saturday, touring the Urgent and Primary Care Centre which opened in Haney Place Mall last month.

His political opponents are saying there aren’t enough doctors to provide an improved level of care, despite opening a new facility.

The NDP government announced 17 such centres around the province, and party Leader John Horgan was in Maple Ridge for the announcement in September.

READ ALSO: Premier in Maple Ridge for health care announcement

The centre is open for walk-in clients from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week. Fraser Health says patients needing treatment for minor cuts, sprains, injuries, prescription refills, fevers, sore throats, ear aches and other non-emergency health problems can access the centre. It is for clients needing care within 12-48 hours. Dix said it is a better option than the ER in many circumstances, and will cut down on wait times at ERs.

Dix said this model of health care, which he called team-based care, is being used in other jurisdictions around the world.

“I give enormous credit to the Maple Ridge Division of Family practice for engaging with us,” said Dix.

The centre was formerly located in a building at the same site as Ridge Meadows Hospital, but that facility will now be used as a COVID-19 testing centre.

Dix said the BC NDP has been prioritizing health care. Last year, for example, it did 252,000 MRIs, where there were only 174,000 in the last year under the BC Liberal government

BC Liberal candidate for Maple Ridge-Mission Chelsa Meadus said there are still not enough doctors in the community.

“That’s what I’m hearing from primary care – we just don’t have the doctors to deliver the service,” she said. “If you don’t have the doctors, how are you able to deliver the service?

“The funding is just not there to deliver the services promised. It’s one thing to put up a bricks and mortar building, but it’s another thing to have the funding there. We’ve seen that in our community a number of times, where the building goes up, but the services aren’t there.”

She said the BC Liberal party would cut red tape to allow foreign doctors to practise in the province.

Dix also talked about his government’s managing the COVID-19 pandemic.

NDP detractors say Dr. Bonnie Henry is responsible for the province doing better than some jurisdictions at limiting public exposure to the pandemic, not the NDP.

Dix countered that other governments have not listened to their public health experts.

“We made sure health care advice came from the health care experts – not from the premier, not from me, but from Dr. Bonnie Henry,” he said. “That hasn’t been the case in all jurisdictions.”

He gave credit to deputy health minister Stephen Brown, the health authority chairs and others for the COVID-19 response.

“It’s a very large team,” he said.

Election day is Oct. 24, but advance polls are open and hundreds of thousands of people have already vote by mail. With election officials observing COVID-19 safety protocols, Dix said people can vote without fear of an additional exposure to the virus.

“Elections BC has done a great job,” he said.

Meadus said running an election at this time contradicts health advice.

“Dr. Bonnie Henry has said we should all be staying home, and limiting our interactions with others,” she said.

“Thousands of campaign managers and volunteers are now out interacting in ways that they were not doing a month ago. I have serious concerns about that.

“We have definitely elevated the risks, and that’s simply because of an election being called in a pandemic – unnecessarily in my opinion.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BC NDPElection 2020maple ridgePitt Meadows

Just Posted

A 49-year-old man from Coquitlam died after he was hit by a dump truck near Airport Way and Harris Road on Saturday, May 15. (Curtis Kreklau/South Fraser News Services)
Update: Pedestrian dies after being hit by dump truck in Pitt Meadows Saturday afternoon

Man was walking his bicycle across the road near Airport Way and Harris Road

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country's crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of May 16

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Gerry Jensen had an interesting visitor last month in his backyard near Maple Ridge Park. It was a male pileated woodpecker. “I hear these guys fairly often, but haven’t actually seen one in 25 years or more. I was very surprised to see this one demolishing a suet block hanging in my Hazelnut tree. Their eyesight must be fantastic in order to find a small block like this more or less hidden in the branches.” (Special to The News)
SHARE: Fine-feathered friends feast in Maple Ridge backyard

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon

The theme for Earth Day celebrations this year is “Emerge”. (Special to The News)
Keeping Earth Day spirit alive in Maple Ridge

Conservation activities contest extends to May 22 and beyond

Ron Tuck presents a Ridge Meadows Royals #33 to Larry Walker Sr., as the local minor ball association retired Larry Walker Jr.’s number. (Special to The News)
Ridge Meadows Baseball retires Larry Walker’s number

Association honours future hall of famer

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

A vial of AstraZeneca vaccine is seen at a mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Calgary, Alta., Thursday, April 22, 2021. Dr. Ben Chan remembers hearing the preliminary reports back in March of blood clots appearing in a handful of European recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Science on COVID, VITT constantly changing: A look at how doctors keep up

While VITT can represent challenges as a novel disorder, blood clots themselves are not new

Poached trees that were taken recently on Vancouver Island in the Mount Prevost area near Cowichan, B.C. are shown on Sunday, May 10, 2021. Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have all become valuable targets of tree poachers in British Columbia as timber prices hit record levels. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne.
Tree poaching from public forests increasing in B.C. as lumber hits record prices

Prices for B.C. softwood lumber reached $1,600 for 1,000 board feet compared with about $300 a year ago

The warm weather means time for a camping trip, or at least an excursion into nature. How much do you know about camps and camping-related facts? (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Are you ready to go camping?

How many camp and camping-related questions can you answer?

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) (File Photo)
Police watchdog investigating after man found dead in Surrey following a wellness check

IIO says officers ‘reportedly spoke to a man at the home before departing’

Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

Most Read