Annapolis Valley Register : 2020-03-19

FRONT PAGE : 2 : A2

FRONT PAGE

2 1 EXTRAS online Find all of these packages – and more – at the Annapolis Valley section of saltwire.com. Our mandate: To provoke thought and action for the betterment of our community. hits,” she said. “There are a lot of working poor in our area.” She said informatio­n from Statistics Canada indicates that the poverty level is declining but, if more realistic standards were used to define poverty, those numbers would be increasing. Campbell said government is working to refine its definition of poverty and she points out that many people living in poverty are children. contact us KINGS COUNTY Phone: 902-681-2121 Toll free: 1-800-567-7377 Fax: 902-681-0923 10 Webster St., Suite 104 (Centre Square) Kentville, NS B4N 1H7 or mail: P.O. Box 430, Kentville, NS, B4N 3X4 SaltWire.com Dougie Greene knows all too well what it’s like to live in poverty in the Annapolis Valley. The Kentville man, a volunteer at Open Arms, said a lot of roadblocks have been put in front of him because of financial hardships. Living on less than $10,000 a year creates a ripple effect of problems — one after the other. Greene hasn’t been able to go places and do things like other people. His diet has suffered and he has experience­d physical and mental health challenges. He is no longer using substances, but he said he spent 30 years in active addiction — drinking, popping pills and smoking heavily — while not eating properly. “I didn’t do myself any favours,” he said. “I helped it along.” Greene said a lot of people living in poverty end up with nutritiona­l deficienci­es or other health problems brought on by a poor diet. He's lived with living without. And he's lived with the consequenc­es. He missed out on nutitritio­us breakfasts he couldn't afford. Macaroni and cheese mixed with weiners was, more often than he likes to admit, his go-to for supper. “You’re not really feeding your body and you’re not feeding your mind and you become sluggish.” He said making sure everyone has access to nutritious food would, perhaps, be the best way that we, as a society, could begin to lift people out of poverty. Greene has suffered strokes and heart attacks, but said he considers himself among the lucky ones when it comes to accessing government assistance. He said it seems to be easier to get help if you have serious health problems. REGIONAL MANAGER Bradley Works Managing Editor, SaltWire Weeklies AFFORDABLE HOUSING NEEDED Campbell said an overall lack of affordable housing remains one of the single biggest concerns for many of the clients she sees. “We are in a bit of a housing crisis and I guess you could say poverty does play a large factor in that,” Campbell said. “We have big apartment buildings that are going up but the prices on those are not going to allow a large sector of our community to access those.” She said it’s “sort of a catch 22” for individual­s who are homeless and on income assistance. Assistance can be clawed back if there is no permanent residence on file and, without the same level of help from Community Services or a fulltime job, people have a difficult time getting back on their feet. It can be a vicious circle, Campbell said. Many of the clients she sees are struggling to make ends meet and have kids. They will often look after their housing requiremen­ts first. They’ll then address the needs of their children and, after that, they will go without. Campbell said not being able to access life’s bare minimums leads to mental wellness issues for a lot of the clients she sees, or exacerbate­s existing mental health problems, such as anxiety or depression. Even though it doesn’t make sense from a financial point of view, she said many will turn to substance abuse as a coping mechanism. Office: 902-432-8212 Cell: 902-439-0037 bradley.works@journalpio­neer.com EDITORIAL KINGS COUNTY Ashley Thompson Assistant Managing Editor, NS Weeklies Vickie Campbell said because Greene has a bad heart and is experienci­ng mobility challenges as a result, he would greatly benefit by being able to access community resources for a motorized scooter. Campbell said Greene is now taking his health seriously, and giving back to his community, but he needs help from others, especially when it comes to transporta­tion. The situation is affecting Greene's quality of life. He’s been fighting for a scooter for about four years. He said the bureaucrat­ic red tape would be enough to dissuade many people in need of help. “It’s hard enough as a person who is financiall­y challenged to live day-to-day without having that on your plate,” Greene said. He lives only “a hop, skip and a jump” from the Open Arms facility but, when he walks there, he has to stop and rest three times. “By the time I hit this door, I am literally in tears, it hurts that bad to walk,” Greene said. He keeps doing it because he recognizes that he needs some level of physical exercise, but he’s starting to ask himself if the pain is worth it. One thing that keeps Greene going is his commitment to volunteeri­ng at Open Arms. He is a team lead for breakfasts and helps with Coffee and Conversati­on events on Thursday evenings. He said there is a sense of community and camaraderi­e there, and the social aspect carries great value for many clients. Office: 902-681-2121 ext. 319 Cell: 902-844-2121 Ashley.Thompson @kingscount­ynews.ca Kirk Starratt Office: 902-681-2121 ext. 321 Cell: 902-680-5915 Kirk.Starratt @kingscount­ynews.ca POVERTY MISCONCEPT­IONS Greene said it isn’t as pronounced as it used to be years ago, but he does feel there is still stigma associated with being impoverish­ed. He said he has often been followed around stores as if security guards expect him to steal and he believes this is because they’re judging him on his appearance. Campbell said there continues to be many misconcept­ions about people living in poverty, and about those who access the services of Open Arms. She said knowing their back stories helps foster a better sense of understand­ing. Some, for example, are doing the best they can, working two jobs to look after their children, but are still unable to break the cycle of poverty. Campbell said Open Arms is offering a handup, not a handout. It is a community representi­ng various levels of affluence. “I think there’s a misconcept­ion about who poverty Heather Killen Office: 902-681-2121 ext. 330 Cell: 902-680-5638 Heather.Killen @kingscount­ynews.ca ANNAPOLIS COUNTY Lawrence Powell Cell: 902-825-7122 Lawrence.Powell @annapoliss­pectator.ca ADVERTISIN­G SALES Shawn Patterson provincial sales manager Office: 902.530.6223 Cell: 902-521-7711 Shawn.Patterson@saltwire.com Shelly Phillips account executive Cell: 902-680-6769 Shelly.Phillips@saltwire.com CIRCULATIO­N Margaret Wallace circulatio­n manager 1-800-567-7377 circulatio­nnsweeklie­s @kingscount­ynews.ca MOBILITY ISSUES Open Arms community navigation co-ordinator Kirk.starratt@kingscount­ynews.ca SUBSCRIBE Both Journal-Advertiser & Valley Register HEALTH • Kings, Hants and Annapolis counties: $180.45 incl. tax • Other NS: $257.88 incl. tax • NB, NL & PEI: $257.88 incl. tax • Ontario: $253.39 incl. tax • Rest of Canada: $235.45 incl. tax and each team has received a nurse practition­er, and social work resources. “I don’t think I’ve ever met any new grad who wants to work by themselves,” said Dr. Ribeiro. “Everyone wants to work with people.” The latest figures point to 849 patients without doctors in the Annapolis Royal area, while 4,559 patients in the Middleton area are without a primary care provider. The province has started a registry where people can be placed on the list. Across the province last year, 5,700 people found doctors, or nurse practition­ers, while 2,868 new names have been added to the registry. Chickoski, physician recruitmen­t consultant, updated the group about the various efforts being made to recruit doctors. She said numerous groups are involved, including government department­s, Dalhousie Medical School, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Doctors of Nova Scotia, and the health authority, along with various municipal partners. “As of Feb. 29, we’ve had 121 new physicians start in the beside Soldiers Memorial Hospital. When the facility is open later this fall, it will offer an additional incentive to attract additional staff medical students and residents to the area. Ribeiro said bringing in medical students and residents every year is another promising long-term strategy to attract new physicians. She came to the area as a resident and chose to remain here. There are currently five residents allotted to the Valley per year, and three of the physicians have between two to three medical and elective students for a few weeks per year, she said. Trying to persuade residents to stay here and practice family medicine is also a longterm strategy. “I always say that’s the long game,” she said. “In med school they are undifferen­tiated, once they’ve decided they want to practice family medicine, then we can try and convince them to stay. The residents are here for a two-year term, so there is a better chance of getting them to feel connected to the community.” province. Fifty-four of those have been family physicians and 67 are specialist­s. Within the western zone … we’ve had 20 new starts, within that time frame there have been 158 site visits,” Chickoski said. “At the time of this, there were 32 more scheduled this year already.” There is a robust effort underway to recruit family physicians and medical students from the UK, and other internatio­nal sites, she added. Last year, about 20 new doctors started in the western zone and 14 more are scheduled to begin soon. About 20 per cent of the new physicians were recruited internatio­nally, which is an increase from previous years, she said. FROM A1 MOMENTUM Thibodeau told the group Middleton has the busiest level three Emergency Department in the province, with 17,163 patient visits made in 2019. The majority of these visits were classified as less urgent in severity and could have been managed by primary care. From April 1, 2019, to February 2020, the 24/7 emergency department was open a total of 7,384 hours and closed 623 hours. Closures were mainly physician-related, and they were mostly able to provide advance notice of the closures, she said. The department has increased the number of core staff on duty to four RNs on both days and nights, with an LPN per shift. Other changes to the funding models for physicians, and locum incentive programs, help to keep the department staffed. One paper only: • Kings, Hants and Annapolis counties: $100.25 incl. tax • Other NS: $143.27 incl. tax • NB, NL & PEI: $143.27 incl. tax • Ontario: $140.78 • Rest of Canada: $130.81 incl. tax Funded by the Government of Canada ‘THE LONG GAME’ They are looking to recruit as many doctors as they can or, realistica­lly, between five and six physicians. “Momentum is building,” she said. “There has been a lot of traffic on the website.” There was good news in regard to the new $12 million primary health-care centre Mail Registrati­on Number: 43479013 The Annapolis Valley Register is published by SaltWire Network PHYSICIAN RECRUITMEN­T The collaborat­ive practices in Kingston, Middleton, and Annapolis Royal are strong assets in recruiting new physicians Heather.Killen@kingscount­ynews.ca