Nelson needs four more family physicians to serve those who don’t have one, and the need will probably increase in the near future. In the Kootenay Boundary region, 25 new full time family doctors will be needed in the next four years.
That’s according to research collected by the Kootenay Boundary Division of Family Practice.
“There are about 4,500 people in the Kootenay Boundary region who are actively looking for a doctor,” says the organization’s Julius Halaschek-Wiener.
Aging population, more doctors retiring
The aging of the population will mean doctors will see fewer patients because the medical problems of older people are more complex and time-consuming. Also, there are many doctors retiring.
“Younger graduating physicians are emphasizing work-life balance over working 70 hours a week,” says Deryn Collier, the marketing manager for the family practice group, “while the older ones have very big practices so it takes more younger ones to replace them.”