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23 new family doctors recruited to work in Lethbridge

A doctor checks a patient's blood pressure. A doctor checks a patient's blood pressure.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) said it recently recruited 23 family physicians to work in Lethbridge.

As of Oct. 29, 22 of the doctors have already started practicing.

The last doctor is still undergoing CPSA practice readiness assessments and is anticipating to start working in March 2024.

Three more positions are still accepting applications as well.

Despite the added physicians, there are still no clinics in Lethbridge accepting new patients, according to Primary Care Networks.

Friends of Medicare Lethbridge chapter president Bev Muendel-Atherstone is concerned that Lethbridge doesn’t have enough family doctors.

“You know the hospitals are overwhelmed. I'm at the hospital quite often and you can hear over the loudspeaker they're saying all hospital beds are taken. So it's really critical,” she said.

Lethbridge isn't the only community struggling to fill its demand for doctors. Several neighbouring towns also don't have any doctors accepting new patients.

“Just checked on the Primary Care Network and no clinic is accepting patients right now. In Lethbridge, Coaldale, Cardston, you know sort of areas around here,” said Muendel-Atherstone.

The Alberta Medical Association said it is frustrated with the lack of family physicians in the province.

Dr. Paul Parks, the head of the medical association, sees it as one of the main issues with Alberta’s healthcare system.

“We continue to have a crisis in family medicine. Too many Albertans do not have access to comprehensive care from family physicians and rural generalists. The health care system has simply not kept pace in terms of framework that’s needed to support longitudinal care,” said Parks. Top Stories

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