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General News · 11th September 2010
Myna Kerr
A grave injustice is taking place on Cortes Island. A much respected and dedicated physician, Dr.Kirstie Overhill has been refused the opportunity to practice on Cortes Island by the Community Health Association Board of Directors. Dr. Overhill has been on disability leave for the past ten months.

In a letter dated August 31, 2010 the Cortes Community Health Association (CCHA) wrote to Dr. Overhill advising her that she will not be given a lease in the Cortes Island Health Centre.

This decision was made at the July 28, 2010 CCHA Board meeting “that at the July 28th meeting of the CCHA, it was the unanimous decision of the Board not to offer to lease the Health Centre to Dr. Overhill. The Board did not feel Dr. Overhill will conform to the new financial and administrative model that the Health Centre is now operating under and the Board has no reasonable confidence a contract will Dr. Overhill will be fulfilled.”

The CCHA Board “feels” but opened no discussion with Dr. Overhill about the new administrative model. In fact the Board refused, in a letter written to Dr. Overhill in response to her letter asking for discussion or mediation, to enter into any discussion or mediation, on any issue or issues.

Despite a great outcry against the CCHA Board decision not to allow Dr. Overhill to resume her position the CCHA Board has ignored the community and suggested in their public announcement that the “Board knows best.”

This is in direct conflict with the statement mate at the CCHA Annual General Meeting when it was stated that the position of physician on Cortes Island would be posted and “any qualified physician can apply. Dr. Overhill is welcome to apply for the position.”

The following petition will be available for signing at the September 10 & 17, 2010 Friday Market. Download the attachment for your copy, Please.

Petition by Mail

For Cortes Islanders who are currently not on Cortes but wish to sign the petition please download and print the petition_by_mail.doc, below, sign it, and mail it to:

Petition to CCHA
c/o of Myrna Kerr, PO Box 247, Manson’s Landing, BC, V0P 1K0

Here is the wording of the Petition:

PETITION TO THE

Cortes Community Health Association Board of Directors

The Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) Board of Directors

The B.C. Minister of Health, The Honourable Kevin Falcon

And attention to: Richard Crow, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer VIHA

We, the undersigned, members of the Cortes Community Health Association and/or residents of Cortes Island,

Draw the attention of the Cortes Community Health Association Board of Directors; the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) Board of Directors; the British Columbia Minister of Health, The Honourable Kevin Falcon; Richard Crow, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer VIHA;

To the following

THAT the doctor who has worked for many years, Dr. Kirstie Overhill, has been denied a contract renewal as the Cortes Island physician, after a period of disability, with the Vancouver Island Heath Authority for reasons that are unknown by the community and that the Cortes Community Health Association has written to Dr. Overhill, dated August 31, 2010 that no space in the Cortes community built Health Centre will be leased to her.

THEREFORE, your petitioners request and call upon the Cortes Community Health Association to hold an Extraordinary General Meeting before September 30, 2010 to explain their actions and their authority to carry out such actions,

THAT the Vancouver Health Authority Board of Directors instruct staff of VIHA to attend the meeting and explain the process by which such a denial could happen and

THAT the Ministry of Health review the internal policies and procedures of the Vancouver Health Authority that such a denial could take place, particularly in light of the strong community condemnation against this action.