Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Opinion
Classified Sites

Brandon Sun - PRINT EDITION

New doctors not enough to cure rural shortage

It has taken considerable time, but provincial government programs designed to attract doctors to rural Manitoba have shown a dividend in Brandon.

Brandon University graduate Dr. Tyler Tegg is one of three new full-time family physicians who will join the current team of eight doctors at the Western Medical Clinic by the end of the year.

As we reported in Thursday’s Sun, Tegg is currently completing his residency with the Rural Family Medicine program at the University of Manitoba, and will become the first graduate of the program to set up shop in the Wheat City.

Tegg will graduate in August after completing his residency with the clinic, and then start taking patients as of Oct. 1. He will be joined at the clinic by two other new physicians from South Africa, a husband and wife team who arrived in Manitoba last December.

This is very good news for area residents who have been without a family doctor for a considerable period of time — with the pending arrival of the three new doctors, the clinic has opened up a waiting list for new patients.

Chronic doctor shortages are unfortunately all too common throughout rural Manitoba, and the search for new physicians — either homegrown or international — is ongoing and seemingly never-ending.

Virden Health Centre has dealt with consistent weekday closures due to a drop from five physicians to two, though Prairie Mountain Health CEO Penny Gilson hopes that by July Virden will enjoy more ER services when one doctor returns from leave. There have also been closures in Hamiota and Killarney, though more sporadically.

The health authority continues to use locum physicians to help keep ER services open in rural areas when local doctors are unable to fill in. But with doctor shortages prevalent throughout Westman, there are not enough locums to cover all the shortages in the region.

Though it would seem we’re going out of our way to point out the dark cloud in the middle of a silver lining, even the good news this week — four new international doctor grads have signed three-year commitments to remain in the communities of Minnedosa, Killarney, Deloraine and Swan River — is marred by the fact that in Minnedosa at least there are still concerns.

With the addition of Dr. Olagoke Owojori, Minnedosa now has three physicians providing both general and ER care. But for Minnedosa, that’s a skeleton crew.

“Only three physicians doing on-call is very tight,” Gilson said. “If all of a sudden one physician wasn’t available for some reason, we could face some disruptions. But for now, they are covering 24-7.”

And signing three-year terms doesn’t necessarily mean these new doctors will stay where they are after their contracts are up.

As we said earlier this month, we have to give credit to the provincial government for making concerted efforts to rectify the situation, including expansions in medical schools to train more doctors, accepting more students with rural roots who are more likely to work in rural communities, exposing medical students to rural practice and offering free tuition for medical school students who agree to work in rural communities most in need.

We are glad to see that these initiatives are helping somewhat, but it still seems like the province is attempting to heal an angry laceration with a small adhesive bandage.

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition May 23, 2014

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on brandonsun.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

Comment
  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

It has taken considerable time, but provincial government programs designed to attract doctors to rural Manitoba have shown a dividend in Brandon.

Brandon University graduate Dr. Tyler Tegg is one of three new full-time family physicians who will join the current team of eight doctors at the Western Medical Clinic by the end of the year.

Please subscribe to view full article.

Already subscribed? Login to view full article.

Not yet a subscriber? Click here to sign up

It has taken considerable time, but provincial government programs designed to attract doctors to rural Manitoba have shown a dividend in Brandon.

Brandon University graduate Dr. Tyler Tegg is one of three new full-time family physicians who will join the current team of eight doctors at the Western Medical Clinic by the end of the year.

Subscription required to view full article.

A subscription to the Brandon Sun Newspaper is required to view this article. Please update your user information if you are already a newspaper subscriber.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Sudden Surge: Flood of 2014
Opportunity Magazine — The Bakken
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media