New Rural Site Visits + Innovations web site allows rural communities to share successes, challenges


RCCbc launched its Rural Site Visits and Innovations web site on September 11! This site documents the great work of the Rural Site Visits team, which is visiting all 201 RSA communities in BC. It also contains a searchable rural innovations inventory that collects several of the creative solutions developed by rural BC communities to address local healthcare challenges. There are currently over 100 innovations listed on the site, with more coming in the near future – we invite you to visit now to explore the site.

If you’re looking for ideas to improve healthcare in your community but aren’t sure where to start on the Innovations web site, reach out to our Innovations Concierge, Tracey DeLeeuw at 1-888-908-8222 or by email at Tracey is available to support you either by recommending innovations to explore, facilitating connections between you and other innovators, or just talking through what issues you want to address.

The data for the Innovations Inventory was collected by our Rural Site Visits project team from many rural BC organizations who wanted to share their creative solutions with other rural BC communities. These innovations – big and small – were created by rural communities, for rural communities, and it is the hope of the many contributors that the inventory will inspire collaboration and creativity among the province’s rural healthcare communities.

Dr. Joshua Greggain, a rural physician practicing in Hope, BC, was one of the first community members to strongly advocate for a provincial resource that would allow for sharing of these community-based rural healthcare innovations. He is part of a collective of Hope and Fraser Canyon healthcare organizations who collaborated with each other and Fraser Health authority to create an innovative funding structure that enabled local community groups to improve access to care, expand outreach services, and so much more (see their innovation listing here). “The opportunity to share widely but also learn from other rural communities is so critical to the success of each community [involved],” he says. “[The new web site] provides a chance to be inspired. The struggles that we’re experiencing could be solved with an answer that may be held by another community facing similar challenges. Shared exchange is a key part of rural healthcare innovation; learning from one another – either online or in meetings or in real time – is the strength of this tool. It’s a compendium of resources – suddenly we’re all better for it.”

The Hope Health and Well-being Initiative is just one of several innovators eager to share their successes and learn about other solutions deployed in other parts of the province. There are many such successes documented in the new innovations inventory. Rural Site Visits project coordinator Krystal Wong notes that well over 200 groups and individuals had an innovation to share. “We encourage everyone interested in rural healthcare in BC to explore the inventory. You can search by keyword or category, and then reach out to the original innovators through the individual listings. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for or want support finding suitable innovations for your community, we invite you to reach out to the Innovations Concierge, Tracey DeLeeuw.”

Rural communities wishing to share their innovation should contact Tracey to have their entry added to the inventory. The Rural Site Visits team will be adding many more innovations to the site – check back monthly for new listings or subscribe to the mailing list for updates. This resource is intended to be a living, breathing document, as well as a place to exchange ideas, discuss principles, and receive inspiration. As Dr. Greggain succinctly describes it, “the power of this tool is that it provides the ability to talk about wins and struggles as a group.” We invite you to join this conversation.