Richmond Primary Care Network Team
Over the next three years, the City of Richmond will benefit from the formation of three new Primary Care Networks (PCN). In British Columbia, PCN’s are being formed as a partnership between the Ministry of Health, the Health Authority and the local Division of Family Practice with the goal of attaching patients to a primary care provider and providing longitudinal wrap around care from interdisciplinary healthcare teams.
Across the rest of the province, this is a new initiative but Richmond has been piloting a similar approach specifically for seniors care. This primary care team worked in partnership with Family Physician practices with a focus on adults with mild to moderate chronic conditions, 70+ years of age needing support in the community.
This team consists of primary care clinicians (social workers, registered nurses, and occupational therapists), chronic disease nurses and a program assistant who all work closely with the patient’s general practitioner to provide timely consultations and comprehensive assessment and care planning. Now the PCN’s are evolving to support patients across the age spectrum to support wellness, chronic disease prevention, management, and stabilization. New disciplines will also be added including podiatry, physiotherapy, occupational therapists, dietitians, mental health clinicians, and counsellors.
Amanda, a Primary Care Clinician with a registered nurse background describes her role as “providing team-based care to support clients in the community by coordinating health care needs and connecting them to community resources. The unique aspect of our role is the opportunity to work closely with clients and their family physicians. I enjoy being a part of their health care journey and have an active involvement in bridging the connections between client, family physician, the health care system and the community in a unified, holistic way.” She believes the PCN team holds a unique role within the health care system and in the community and has the ability to positively affect perspectives, attitudes, and behaviors at a stage in an individual’s life before it becomes too late.
Health care professionals within the PCN work in teams and connect with each other to provide clients a well-rounded care plan. “Working with an interdisciplinary team is always a great opportunity”, says Monica, a social worker within the PCN team. “The different lens that each clinician brings to a client’s situation provides a broader view of the person and the potential ways in which we can assist them to meet their goals. We all welcome the chance to help each other, and follow up on our interactions with one another’s clients so there are no gaps in accountability.”
The team members all mentioned it is rewarding to feel like they are making a difference in their client’s lives. Carryn, a Primary Care Clinician, says, “We are all working towards the same goal which is supporting our clients to stay home for as long as possible.”
If you’re interested in learning about PCN career opportunities, visit: careers.vch.ca