Community Consultation being held to gather feedback from Northern BC residents about health in the North

Northern Health will be conducting a community consultation, “Let’s Talk About Health”, across Northern BC during late May and the first half of June. The public consultation initiative, which is open to all Northern BC residents, will gather public feedback about health in the North through local community working sessions, open houses, and a consultation workbook.

“We are hoping to hear from a wide cross-section of Northern B.C.

residents,” said Harry Gairns, Board Chair. “This consultation marks the beginning in our commitment to communicate and consult with Northern British Columbians on an ongoing basis. As we work towards more efficient and effective ways to support health in the North, we are seeking public input to help provide perspective for strategic decisions.”

Information gathered during the consultation will be used to advise Northern Health’s Board of Directors as they develop plans to support the health of people and communities in our region.

The consultation sessions and workbook are framed around four broad questions that probe different aspects of health care in Northern

communities:

* How can individuals and families improve the overall health of their communities?

* How should we define success in working toward better health for the residents of Northern BC?

* How can community groups, agencies and organizations work with each other and Northern Health to create better health in Northern BC?

* Which programs and/or related health services have the greatest potential to improve the health of residents in your community?

Community working sessions and an open house in Fort St. John have been scheduled for June 8, and will be held at the Quality Inn.

Community working sessions and an open house in Dawson Creek have been scheduled for June 9, and will be held at the George Dawson Inn.

Both open houses will be held from 5:30 to 8:30pm with a Northern Health Medical Health Officer attending. Individuals and groups interested in coming to a consultation working session are asked to register online at www.northernhealth.ca or by calling toll free 1-866-445-8013.

Consultation workbooks are available for pickup at the Fort St. John Health Unit, Fort St. John Hospital, Dawson Creek Health Unit, Dawson Creek & District Hospital, Hudson’s Hope Health Centre, Chetwynd Health Unit, Chetwynd General Hospital, and the Tumbler Ridge Health Centre.

“We have tried to make this consultation process as accessible as possible for local residents,” said Gairns. “Depending on your time and interest, you can attend a session or open house in person or you can fill out a workbook in the comfort of your own home – by yourself or with others as a group.”

A public report that summarizes the consultation’s key trends and commentary will be published by September. For more information about Northern Health’s community consultation, please visit www.northernhealth.ca or call 1-866-445-8013.