Several months ago, I signed a petition to IHA to re-hire plastic surgeon Dr. Andre deGreef. His licence needed to be renewed and he subsequently wrote the exams, passed them and his license was renewed.
After having said at a local meeting that they would “welcome him back with open arms” once he had completed the licensing requirements, IHA then announced that they no longer wanted more than one plastic surgeon on staff, claiming no wait lists.
Of course there would be no wait lists! Why would GPs refer patients when no plastic surgeon was in this area from the end of October 2016 until mid-May 2017?
I have been on a wait list for Dr. Cook, the ear, nose, throat specialist, since June 2017. Imagine how I felt when I learned that Dr. deGreef, who still wants to work in our Trail area and who has considerable training himself in the specialty of ear, nose and throat, used to do back up for Dr. Cook. Now Dr. Cook has a long wait list (I was told there were 800 on that list as of the fall of 2017.)
Ours is an aging population, with skin cancer prevalent. Traveling to Kelowna for expert care is not easy and it is expensive.
Dr. deGreef is well liked and respected in our area. IHA has offered no reasonable response as to why they would originally say our area could support two plastic surgeons and they now turn down one who has proven his worth at our hospital since coming here in 2003.
The fact that several other health jurisdictions around the world are interested in hiring him, speaks well to his expertise.
Let’s hear an explanation from IHA now, since there was no reply to the hand delivered petitions.