The British Columbia government is expanding a registry program provincewide in an effort to connect patients with available family doctors.
Health Minister Adrian Dix says the expanded Health Connect Registry, which launched July 1, aims to make it easier for B.C. patients to get a family doctor or nurse practitioner in their community by signing up for a primary-care provider.
Dix says he’s not making promises or predictions about the numbers of people who will find doctors, but progress will be measured and regular updates will be provided to the public starting this fall.
He says the number of people without a family doctor in B.C. has declined to about 895,000 from 980,000 in 2021, but the number is still too high.
The minister says recent government programs to attract and retain family doctors in B.C. through a new fee model has attracted 3,300 sign ups, while 156 new family doctors have registered for a new practice incentive program.
Dix says the registry will provide a list of providers and clinics accepting new patients.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 5, 2023.