Midway’s only family doctor has said he will have to leave his practice because mayor and council won’t renew his lease at the village medical clinic.
Dr. Jesse Thompson in an open letter to his patients stated he would have to leave the clinic by Feb. 25, 2022. “This decision was not my own, as I had no intention to leave a practice I love,” he wrote, adding that “the Midway Village counselors have decided to refuse renewal of the clinic lease with me.”
Thompson would offer to serve his village patients from Grand Forks, where he lives with his wife and young son, but he qualified that “this forced change might require our family to uproot entirely.”
Neither Thompson’s letter nor Midway Mayor Martin Fromme offered any reasons for council’s decision not to renew the doctor’s lease. Asked for comment Tuesday, Nov. 23, Fromme stressed that the matter was firmly in-camera. To that point, Fromme said he couldn’t confirm or deny that council had refused the lease at all.
An online statement signed by Fromme and posted to the Village website reads simply: “We are in the process of securing a replacement doctor. If the present doctor should leave before a replacement is secured, the Rural Locum Program will assist to ensure there is continued coverage until the replacement takes over the practice.”
The Village owns the medical clinic, Fromme said.
The clinic is meanwhile home to Dr. Thompson’s practice and a blood lab run by the Interior Health Authority, according to the BC College of Physicians and Surgeons’ website. The blood clinic is accredited to run in the clinic until November 2025.
Thompson did not respond to The Gazette’s requests for comment before this story went to press Monday, Nov. 29.