Unsung heroes indeed

Editor:

It was a delight to read about our local physicians being recognized as “unsung heroes” for their contribution to the Covid-19 Physicians Task Force. Their efforts to keep us in the loop, up to date, and informed around the spread of COVID-19 showcased how clear and open communication in times of crisis are key to managing expectations and alleviating fear. I especially liked their tongue-in-cheek reminders that a Costco run is not “essential” travel.

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This new generation of physicians is key to our future health and well-being, and when combined with the wisdom and guidance of elders, we gain community assets that many smaller towns can only wish for.

A few years ago, when we first arrived on the Sunshine Coast, we met Dr. Herman Mentz during a rather unexpected visit to emergency. We thought he might be the youngest doctor we’d ever encountered. My spouse had severe stomach pain, and Dr. Mentz took steps needed to find the underlying cause, which unfortunately turned out to be bladder cancer. We didn’t have a family physician, and had no idea how to navigate a health system. On the spot, Dr. Mentz said he’d be our family doctor, and quickly moved into action providing top-notch care and support through two years of related major surgeries and complex treatments. These younger physicians approach life, and their calling a bit differently than those who have gone before them. They use technology in a way that couldn’t have been imagined prior to the pandemic, and their youthful spirit offers a sense of hope and optimism to our hospitals and clinics.

I hope we are able to retain as many doctors, nurses and health-care workers as we can in our community and they each see the Sunshine Coast as a place to call home now and long into the future. They are truly valued experts, within a crisis, and in day-to-day care.

Janice Iverson, Sechelt

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