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Last month, more details were revealed about a plan to bring more medical service to Fort St. John.

Jonathon Dyck with Northern Health wrote in an e-mail to Energetic City that there are three full time positions in general surgery on the manpower plan for the Northeast; two located in Fort St john and one in Dawson Creek. The three positions work as a team to provide after hours coverage.

“It is not sustainable to expect or require more than one in three after hours coverage,” he wrote. “And the workload for general surgery in the two communities is not sufficient to support more than three general surgeons. “

He wrote that Northern Health is working to fill as much of the vacancy as possible with locums and they have had some success in attracting locums for the next few months.

“We are working closely with the Fort St John surgeon to recruit to the current vacancy, and to ensure locums are available as needed.”

In addition, he said the solo surgeon in Fort St John is taking a significant leave from end of November to end of January, and they are actively seeking locum coverage for this time as well.

Northern Health can’t confirm at this point the long term plans of the solo surgeon in Fort St John, as it would be up to them to do so as a private business person.

Physicians are private business owners who bill the medical services plan and are not Northern Health employees.

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