Health Minister Terry Lake made a special trip to Prince George to announce the creation of a new Chair, whose job will be to advocate for rural medicine and advance research that is applicable to rural regions of the province. It’s a first for BC and Canada and came from a recommendation by the Rural Coordination Centre of BC.
The position has been made possible with a $5 million endowment fund and $350,000 in operational funding a year for the next five years.
And the person to hold that position for the next three years, at least, is no stranger to rural health care. Dr. Dave Snadden was head of the Northern Medical Program for eight years. He says rural medicine is a special brand of medicine.
“Because it’s exciting medicine. It’s real medicine,” he says. “When you’re working in a rural practice, you may have very limited resources, you’re really based in your clinical skills. It is very satisfying medicine and the doctors I spoke to just love rural medicine.”
He says many of those frontier doctors he met with were graduates of the Northern Medical Program.