Hudson Medicentre expanding services
By Nick Zacharias
PHOTO COURTESY GABRIELLE GRÉGOIRE
Dr. Gabrielle Grégoire (centre) stands in front of the Hudson Medicentre, surrounded by the expanding team of doctors and clinical staff who are geared up to offer expanded services for the community.
The Hudson Medicentre is in the midst of a growth spurt, with expanded services and additional physicians having already arrived and more on the way. The long-standing clinic has been working for some time towards official status as a Family Medicine Group (FMG) with Santé Québec, which means a group of family doctors who work together and in close collaboration with other health and social services professionals, such as nurses and social workers. According to Santé Québec, A person who goes to an FMG for a consultation can receive medical services from their own family doctor or from another doctor in the group if their family doctor is not available, and also see a nurse, a social worker or another health professional in the FMG for follow-up services if necessary.
“It’s very exciting,” says Dr. Gabrielle Gregoire, who works at the Medicentre and who has spearheaded the effort at improving access and quality of care. “We are being joined by a part-time pharmacist, two full-time nurse practitioners, we like to call them ‘super nurses,’ plus a social worker and one or two more regular nurses.”
Gregoire is happy about the additions, emphasising that not only are the new services helpful to patients, they also attract new doctors. As some of the current doctors at the Medicentre are beginning to reduce their workloads (but still remaining on board) new faces are joining the medical team, meaning there will be more doctors available to tend to patient needs. Says Gregoire, “We have a new doctor who has already joined us, who was previously a resident here, and we’ll have another doctor joining us in early June who has practiced on the West Island for the last 10 years.”
Access to family medicine
The changes at the Medicentre also mean there will be more access for new patients. “Those who don’t have a family doctor should register with the Guichet d’accès aux médecins de famille (GAMF),” says Gregoire. Found online at www.gamf.gouv.qc.ca, the GAMF is a service that helps people locate a family doctor who is accepting new patients. “We are definitely open to accepting new patients from Hudson,” she said.
Improving wait times
Lead times to get appointments, and the length of time spent in the waiting room have long been an issue in Hudson as in many other clinics and hospitals. Admits Gregoire, “We as doctors are often late, and personally I feel like recently it has been worse for me with so many meetings and so much time spent setting all this up, but now things are going to get better. It really is exciting.” Through all of it she says the Medicentre staff members have appreciated the support of the community. “We are happy to be able to provide even better care and support for the community which has supported us so well.”