Call-out for affordable housing

To the Editor,

Together, Interior Health management, the Medical Centre, and District of Clearwater are working hard to recruit physicians and nurses to our community.

The biggest challenge we face is the limited availability of affordable rental homes to house our health care professionals and their families.

Rural communities are often in competition with each other to recruit these professionals and we do not want a lack of affordable housing to be the reason a physician or nurse chooses another community over Clearwater.

It is important that our physicians and nurses have suitable homes and reasonable costs of living. This increases the likelihood that they will choose to make our community their long-term home. Many are drawn away from larger centres for a lifestyle that is affordable and spacious – our community has had this as a competitive advantage over most.

We need to maintain this.

Currently, we have several potential hires who have been unsuccessful in their search in Clearwater’s current housing market. Both the shortage of available rentals relative to our growing population and the high cost of rental housing are barriers.

In light of increasing COVID-19 cases across the province and in anticipation of a second wave during the fall/winter, this is not the time to be short-staffed at our hospital. We are asking that landlords consider prioritizing housing health care professionals at an affordable rate which in turn supports the entire community in a fundamental way. We need the community’s support in continuing to attract professionals to Clearwater.

If you or someone you know is interested in renting your home to our health care professionals, please contact Amy Thain, Chapter Coordinator, Rural and Remote Division of Family Practice at

With appreciation,

Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital

Clearwater Chapter – Rural and Remote Division of Family Practice

District of Clearwater

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