Shivering in line at the walk-in clinic in minus 28 – the system’s not working

(Nancy Bepple photo)

(Nancy Bepple photo)

Facebook post republished with the permission of Nancy Bepple:

(Tuesday) morning I went to one of Kamloops’ walk-in clinics to experience first hand what it’s like to not have a doctor in Kamloops.

At -28C with the wind chill, the first person arrived (on crutches) at 7:35 am. The next person arrived at 7:40 am. By 8:40 am when the clinic opened its door to give out numbers, there were 30+ people in line from kids to seniors, from workers to retirees. I talked to everyone of them.

They all agreed it’s time for a change. The system’s not working for the people of Kamloops. As one fellow said, “I used to have a doctor, then in the fall, they gave 2 weeks notice and shut their practice. I thought I was okay, but now I’m like everyone else”.

Like 30,000 others in Kamloops without a doctor.


About Mel Rothenburger (5528 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

12 Comments on Shivering in line at the walk-in clinic in minus 28 – the system’s not working

  1. Sad diabetic // January 10, 2017 at 1:45 PM // Reply

    I have had the chance to have 5 different doctors since I came here in 1990. I am now with a virtual Doctor out of Vancouver. This is the only way I can see a doctor as I work 7-4 mon to friday. I have high blood pressure and diabetes. So I require a doctor. I hope something us done to fix this doctor shortage. Soon.

  2. People with anxiety and/or depression have enough of a struggle just coping with the day. It is absolutely impossible for them to join a line like that – especially when often a person gets to the front of the line to find out the clinic is full for the day. It is a terrible situation for everyone!

  3. My husband’s doctor moved so he goes to a doctor in West Vancouver. He’s on disability and needs to see his doctor twice a month. Horrible drive across the Coq in the winter.

  4. i had been without a doctor 4 years and fortunately got 1 as I am a disabled senior. dr. discovered I was being treated 4 2 medical conditions I did not have due 2 lack of continuity in caren now I no longer take unnecessary meds which is saving medical some money

  5. Maureen Embury // January 6, 2017 at 10:10 PM // Reply

    The system is definitely not working. Our Dr is in Merritt. My husband & I have lived in Knutsford for 15yrs & have commuted but we are both seniors now. We have both had some serious medical issues. The trip can be daunting when your health is compromised. 2 days ago I needed the services of a dr. After sleepness nights coughing so hard I ached. Of course I couldn’t drag myself to a walk in clinic in time. After a call to all clinics I ended up at hospital ER. I really felt bad going there as I always felt ER was for emergencies. We need a family doctor in Kamloops.

  6. “These middle eastern doctors” give your head a shake pal. That statement is beyond offensive. I’ve had many nasty doctors but from every continent. It is extremely hard to get into med school in a country like India as their population is so large. You have to be incredibly smart and dedicated to become a doctor. Only the best of the best are given the opportunity to even be trained. Have a little faith in humanity and try not to let a few bad experiences cloud your judgment.

  7. I ended up going back to see my old doc in Prince George. why? because my health needs some oversight. 6 hr drive….worth it. but not everyone has that option

  8. Pam erickson // January 4, 2017 at 9:09 PM // Reply

    Train more doctors, nurse practitioners, bring more doctors into the country…Syrians!! If nothing else have walkin clinics inside where folk aren’t waiting in the elements!! The government’s do not want public health care and are not helping it to be functional. The majority of folk can’t afford huge medical bills..that is why medicare exists…don’t forget it!!!

    • Have yo u ever had to deal with some of these middle eastern doctors ? so far, the ones I have been unfortunate enough to meet are just plain nasty.

      • Your comments line up with your monogram, why can’t you see the brighter side once in awhile. We need trained doctors period……one third of the population in Kamloops are without one, the sick and the elderly, and disabled have to line up in the freezing cold to see a doctor, how cruel can it get !

      • My doctors name is Mohamad and he is awesome.

  9. Brenda Turley // January 4, 2017 at 5:05 PM // Reply

    It is a horrendous crisis. This is Canada, not a third world country.
    Polititians should pit money to yhus problem before giving money to oyher countries. I also don’t have a doctor and have stood in that very line also. When you are sick or in discomfort it is an unhealthy indignity to suffer through. Thank you for bringing attention to this crisis.

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