Armstrong seniors home hires own doctor

Access to health care easier for seniors in Heaton Place

Although Canada has more doctors per capita then ever before, there are still many areas where Canadians are challenged to find and have the services of a physician.

One does not have to go back very far in time to find that Armstrong did not have any doctors servicing the local community.

Even though a creative approach by the community did much to alleviate that problem (the Haugen Medical Clinic), many residents are still on a waitlist for physician services.

This issue is particularly problematic for seniors wanting to live and move to communities where there is a lack of availability, especially for seniors from adjoining communities, from out of town, or from out of province who want to live in Armstrong and at Heaton Place Retirement Community.

Now, Heaton Place is proud to say, ‘Help is now on the way.’

Building on the creative approach taken by the local community, Heaton Place went in search of a doctor who could serve the medical needs of its residents and found success.

READ MORE: 98-year-old North Okanagan woman designs clothes for Barbie

With the assistance of the local IDA Pharmacy, Heaton Place was fortunate to attract Dr. America Uribe to fill that medical care need.

In early 2020, Uribe will begin her association with Heaton Place by addressing the medical and health needs of residents without a physician, and for residents wanting to have the convenience and proximity of this available service without having to travel to the local clinic or to services in surrounding areas, such as Vernon and Salmon Arm.

Uribe’s services will be available to residents on-site at Heaton Place on a bi-monthly basis.

In addition to Uribe’s services, the IDA Pharmacy is looking to provide an on-site teleconferencing service, allowing residents of Heaton Place access to both a pharmacist and physician for consultations daily during regular business hours.

“There are several benefits resulting from this additional service,” Heaton Place manager Jan Destobel said.

“Obviously, for future individuals choosing to live at Heaton Place; for our current residents without a doctor; and for those residents choosing to opt into this service, they will now have on-site availability and daily consultative services,” she said.

“This is a great convenience for not only these individuals, but also for their family members typically tasked as the primary source of transportation for such medical services.

“Also, should a resident who is currently a user of the Haugen Medical Clinic opt to use the in-house service, someone on the community wait list will benefit from the opening created.”

Uribe obtained her MD degree from the National University of Mexico. After finishing medical school, Uribe spent 18 months as a post-doctoral scholar at the University of Alabama in Birmingham.

She then immigrated to Canada and spent six years as a research coordinator in the division of rheumatology at the BC Children’s Hospital. Following that, she completed a two-year family medicine residency at the University of British Columbia.

Uribe has worked as a family doctor in Enderby, Kelowna and currently practices in Lake Country.

The residents of Heaton Place proudly welcome Dr. Uribe and look forward to having her warm personality and medical expertise as part of their retirement community.

Should you have any questions about, or be interested in a tour of Heaton Place, contact resident relations coordinator Carrie O’Neill at 250-546-3353, ext 506.

READ MORE: Lumby looking overseas to find doctors

READ MORE: Lumby finds new doctor

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