Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau, the MLA for Cowichan Valley, is suggesting several short and long-term steps that BC can take to address a critical shortage of family doctors.
At a news conference on Thursday, Furstenau called out the NDP government for its failure to act with urgency.
She says the government does have the necessary tools to begin a rapid shift in the delivery of primary care.
The Greens have called for a move away from the fee-for-service model, but Furstenau says the provincial government has taken to blaming others for the family doctor crisis and deflecting calls for action.
She says the current crisis has grown in scope and severity over the course of several governments, including NDP administrations, since the 1990s.
In the short term, Furstenau says the provincial government should provide financial support to existing family practices so that no more are forced to close.
She also says the province needs to protect whistleblowers and address low morale in the healthcare sector.
Furstenau says healthcare professionals should not fear repercussions for speaking up when their
work conditions are unsafe or patients are put at risk.
Nor should they feel abandoned by their government and hopeless at work.
Furstenau says over the long term the province should create the infrastructure for team-based primary care and a shift away from the fee-for-service model.
The BC Green party says a team-based approach is about the right care, from the right person, at the right time, while freeing up family doctors or nurse practitioners to provide the aspects of care they are trained to do.