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October 22, 2014 – Mayor’s Report

Meet the Mayor

October 22, 2014


The Fall Family Medicine Conference just wrapped up in Vancouver and the District of Chetwynd, anticipating your needs and desires, had two representatives, Councillors Galbraith and Pfanner, in attendance to meet potential recruits to Chetwynd.

Northern Health supported the District of Chetwynd through providing attractive brochures featuring Chetwynd as a desirable place to live and practice medicine. In addition, Northern Health had recruiters in attendance to support our own representatives as they presented the benefits of living in Chetwynd.

This is not the end of Council’s recruiting effort. It is just the beginning. We cannot stop until the effort takes on a momentum of its own and health professionals are lining up for the privilege of working in our home town – until the time comes when it will be “take a number and wait.”

In the conference promotional material I noticed the following statement: “The Patient’s Medical Home (PMH) is a vision presented by the College of Family Physicians of Canada for the future of family practice in Canada.” PMH parallels the vision Council has been promoting in Chetwynd as we build the new centre. It seems that Chetwynd is right on track with the trend in modern medical practice. Our role now is to show prospective practioners in Chetwynd that they will have the freedom to engage in the latest of medical practices in our home town.

I do not apologize for the cost of recruiting. The cost of recruiting has to be balanced against the very real cost of failing to recruit. It’s like the cost of education: expensive – until you balance it against the cost of a lifetime of ignorance. Given this perspective, you can expect me to support recruitment efforts for the next four years, the length of my term. And I fully intend to do so.

It is good to have team members willing to take time from their regular routines to attend conferences such as the Family Medicine Conference and I acknowledge Councillors Galbraith and Pfanner for their dedication to the cause of health care in Chetwynd. It is not a perk that goes with the job to spend a weekend in Vancouver sitting, standing, talking, smiling in a booth promoting the joys of living in Chetwynd. I am sure they could name several things that they would rather be doing. But it goes with the job they were elected to perform.

We have to go to where physicians congregate. The next opportunity occurs sometime in the new year in Washington state. I intend to promote Chetwynd’s presence at that conference where hundreds of US doctors will assemble to learn of their options north of 49.

I believe Chetwynd has attractive options. Our role is to make contacts, present the options attractively, and follow through with further contacts with those who show interest in what we have to offer. We will not rest until we achieve the recruitment momentum that sees health-care professionals calling us for a placement.


Merlin Nichols, Mayor