General News · 17th December 2018
Notice and thanks to the community:
Dr. Kirstie Overhill Retirement Letter
I am pleased that my lengthy lawsuit with the CCHA for defamation has been satisfactorily concluded. I have received a comprehensive retraction and apology as published in the Cortes Marketer on September 28 and a settlement in addition to the retraction. My reputation in the community has been cleared and that it is now known to all that I have been honest and ethical in my interactions with the CCHA, VIHA and the community, and at all times delivered high quality medical care in my practice. I always acted in the best interests of the Cortes community even when I was myself very ill.
Several people have asked me if I plan to return to work on Cortes. Unfortunately the answer is no - after all this time, I am at the point of retirement from active practice. I have enjoyed 37 years of demanding and challenging work in rural BC and the time has come to slow down and have a more balanced life.
My medical practice has been a great experience and I think back with pleasure on the many clinical successes, the lives saved and my long-term relationships with patients. I am proud to say that in all this time I have not had a single complaint to the College of Physicians and Surgeons about the standard of my care or any other issue. This year I was honored to receive a fellowship from the Society of Rural Physicians of Canada.
I value the eleven years I worked on Cortes, weathering the challenges of solo practice and emergencies in a remote setting, playing a major role in building the health centre and bringing much needed programming (including mental health, emergency services, nurse practitioner, and children's services) to the island. I treasured collaborating with Klahoose First Nation including opening a clinic in their community. In subsequent years as a locum I have had the opportunity to travel to beautiful communities in BC, the Yukon and NWT and have appreciated the warm support I have invariably received.
I plan to continue for now the contract I have with the Rural Coordination Centre of BC and my consultancy to UBC for their Rural Education Programs (CPD). This work is bringing benefit to rural physicians and communities on a provincial and national basis.
Thank you to the many community members who have supported me and expressed their thanks after my departure from practice on Cortes. I hope to continue to catch up with you for many years into the future!