General · 8th November 2013
Dr Mary Boegel
In April of this year, Quadra Island was successful in its application for a Nurse Practitioner through the Nurse Practitioner for British Columbia (NP4BC) program. I want to thank the many people on Quadra who contributed to the process involved in getting the Nurse Practitioner (NP) position awarded here. Most importantly, I want to thank Dr. Erika Kellerhals for her vision of developing sustainable health care delivery on Quadra Island and for her hard work and persistence in leading the application process with the Ministry of Health and Island Health. Without her leadership, Quadra would never have succeeded in the very competitive application process. Dr. Kellerhals had support in this endeavor from Quadra Islanders who participated with her in efforts to stabilize the health care services on Quadra in the past year and who contributed to the NP application process in particular. James Wilson, Chairman of the Kwakiutl District Council, and Ralph Dick, Chief of the Cape Mudge Band were instrumental in writing persuasive letters of support for the application. Thanks are also due to Betty Doak, RN, Mary McIntosh, MD, Jim Abram, Strathcona Regional District Director, and Claire Trevena, MLA. Members of the Quadra Circle offered substantial support as well. I want to thank Enid O’Hara, RN and Victoria Power from Island Health who worked hard within Island Health administration to make this happen.
I’m pleased to announce that Pat Peterson, NP has been recruited to Quadra Island and will be working out of the Quadra Island Medical Clinic. Pat was interviewed and selected from a number of NP candidates who applied for the position. We are thrilled that she has agreed to take the job to serve Quadra Islanders, as well as outreach to the Surge Narrows community. We are also delighted that she and her husband Steve plan to make Quadra their home. They are coming from Cortes Island where Pat has practiced as a Nurse Practitioner at the Cortes Medical Clinic for the past two years.
The Nurse Practitioner role is quite new to medical care in British Columbia. But, in the United States, NP’s have played an important role in health care delivery for over 30 years. In my own family practice medical residency program in California, nurse practitioner skills were so valued that NP’s were important members of the clinical faculty for family medicine doctors in training.
A Nurse Practitioner is a registered nurse who goes on to do graduate studies and clinical training in diagnosis and treatment of illness and becomes licensed to provide patient care both in outpatient and hospital facilities. NP’s are capable of taking a medical history and performing a physical exam, ordering laboratory and X-ray tests to make a diagnosis and then prescribing many treatments and medications to benefit the patient. They are able to provide preventative services such as Pap smears and routine physicals, to diagnosis urgent and ongoing health problems and to manage chronic conditions like diabetes or heart problems. They have expertise in patient education, public health issues and palliative care for the dying. In my experience, most NP’s practice side by side with physicians, offering a team approach to the care of the patient. This allows the patient to benefit from the unique nursing perspective of the NP, as well as from the expertise the physicians may bring from their medical training.
Pat’s NP position is meant to improve health care access and services for everyone here on the island. Before jumping fully into practice, Pat will be spending some time performing an important analysis of health care needs on Quadra. She will reach out to interested groups to assess patient and community services already available and to understand any unmet needs. At Quadra Island Medical Clinic, we look forward to incorporating Pat’s skills and her findings regarding the needs of Quadra residents into the care we offer our patients and the island as a whole. I believe that Pat will become an important asset to Quadra’s medical community and that she will provide outstanding health services to our island. Please join me in extending a heartfelt welcome.
– Mary Boegel, MD
Comment by Diane Yusko Fielding on 9th November 2013
I extend a big thank you to Dr. Kellerhals and her vision and a welcome to Pat Peterson as the first Nurse Practitioner to Quadra Is. As a retired Rn working in community health as a home care nurse and with people with special needs I am fully aware of the benefits of a team approach to health care and the role that NP's can fill in that team environment. We will all benefit from this extended access to health care here on our great island.
Comment by Nicole Amass on 9th November 2013
As a fellow Nurse Practitioner and some-time Quadra resident, I am very excited to learn that Pat Peterson is joining the Clinic and becoming a member of our great community! Welcome, Pat.