The C.W. Wiebe Medical Clinic has partnered with the Winkler and District Chamber of Commerce to conduct a primary care provider-focused survey.
Jim Neufeld is the current clinic executive director.
With the resources they have today, Neufeld says they’re not able to meet all the demands of the community, particularly regarding primary care.
To get a scope of the size of the deficit they’re dealing with is difficult to determine. He said having the Chamber interview their member employees would be a good tool and a great place to start.
"We've engaged the Chamber of Commerce to help us with this, and we're asking just some very simple questions," said Neufeld. "We've asked the Chamber to ask their members to survey their employees on these questions. How many individuals are in your household? and do you have access to a primary care provider? Someone that you can call and make an appointment to see."
Neufeld says they know this won't indicate everyone in the community that may need a primary care provider. He said they will likely explore some additional avenues to gather more information.
"The other thing about reaching out to the Chamber is that we know that Chamber members are working hard at growing their businesses and expanding their businesses and that very often involves recruiting new workers," added Neufeld. "And we know that in particular, new people to the community, there's going to be quite a number of those that have not been able to be attached to a primary care provider. So we think this will give us a good indication of that number that we're looking for."
Neufeld said with nearly all of the clinic's physicians providing services at Boundary Trails Health Centre, and demands at the hospital continually increasing, has also "eaten away at some of our capacity to provide primary care" He said they're actively recruiting, and will have a few individuals joining the team at the clinic soon.