By Marianne Curtis
The City of Steinbach council recently sat down to discuss the findings of a special task force that investigated the recruitment and retention of doctors in the community.
On April 21, councilor Abe Hiebert took to the floor as the chairperson of the Task Force on Doctor Recruitment and Retention to present the groups report to the city of Steinbach council.
“We had a wonderful committee that worked very well together and gathered substantial information regarding our mandate,” said Hiebert. “We interviewed various people that had been or are presently involved with the health care system and this information resulted in the Task Force Report.”
The report highlighted factors that affect doctor recruitment and suggested that the city of Steinbach should play an integral role in realizing a primary care model. It suggested that the community should invest more time, and become more involved with making health care a priority.
It also recommended that the city appoint a City and District Health Board that would include doctors, members of the local chamber, Bethesda Foundation, Haven Group, Steinbach Housing, city council, the health board, citizens and members from neighboring municipalities.
Mayor Chris Goertzen praised the group for their hard work and said he looks forward to further discussion as well as more doctors in the community.
“An integral part of a community of excellence is high quality healthcare service,” said Mayor Goertzen. “The Task Force has done some good work and made some key recommendations. I look forward to the discussions with City Council as we all want to see more doctors providing services in our city.”
The Task Force was put together in 2008 and mandated with the task of exploring the status of Steinbach’s current health care services, and find ways to improve doctor recruitment and retention in the Steinbach area.
Members of the Mayor’s Task Force are Abe Hiebert (Chair), Dr. Mark Duerksen, Dr. John Schellenberg, Barry Dyck, Marg Rempel, and Denise Pattyn (RHA Rep).