The Vulcan County Attraction and Retention Committee was formed in approx. 10 years ago to help the existing Vulcan medical staff attract more doctors to our community. Since that time it has expanded its mandate to include all health care workers needed in AHS facilities and primary care clinics in Vulcan and Vulcan County. The committee is formed of a group of volunteers who represent the Town of Vulcan, County of Vulcan, medical personnel and interested citizens with links to education, the clergy and the Chamber of commerce. Meetings are held quarterly.
The A and R committee works on the following 5 principles of their strategic plan:
- Have an aggressive marketing plan: this was accomplished by developing and maintaining the Vulcan Medical Recruitment website and creating Locum packages for doctors doing temporary work at the Vulcan Community Health Centre. The locum packages contain information on what the town and county have to offer the locum while they are working at the hospital.
- Promoting Health Careers in High School: We believe that if we “grow our own” we will more easily recruit professionals to come home and work in their home town. Efforts thus far have included working with the Outreach School to provide a learning experience for the student by allowing them to do a project with a medical professional of their choice, for which they also received school credits. We have also encouraged job shadowing and job experience through the school programs. Hospital administration has also hired students in to Health Care Aid positions, working jointly with the school to provide the student with school credit while completing the Health Care Aid course.
- Maintaining a High Profile with Health Care Workers: We have maintained a presence for the past several years at the Rural Family Doctor student’s event called the Transition to Practise. This event brings together the student doctors who are getting ready to graduate and decide on a practise area. It allows the committee to recruit on a face to face basis. However, for the past 2 years it has been a virtual event. We have also hosted a weekend of learning and fun for the 1st and 2nd year resident doctors and some nurses to show them the advantages of rural medicine and living. This program was co-hosted by RhPAP.
- Attraction of Health Care Workers: The committee liaises closely with the Vulcan Community Health Centre manager, the Vulcan Clinic doctors and the Arrowwood Clinic Doctor to identify what HCW are needed and when. We offer help with hosting prospective employees to show them the benefits of rural living and working. We also engage other community resources to help us in this effort, such as the school principals, local real estate agents, members of the clergy or the local service organizations .
- Retention of Health Care Workers: The Committee has worked hard to arrange support and an introduction to the community for new Health Care Workers. For our new doctors, we have arranged for temporary transportation, free housing for a year, and helped them find contacts in the school, the churches and the banks. For other Health Care Workers, we have arranged for free sleeping arrangements while working a number of consecutive shifts, if they don’t reside in town. Other retention activities have included spearheading a gratitude campaign, providing snacks and needed essentials for long shifts, recognizing Family Doctor week and Nurses Week, “Thank you” BBQ’s, gift certificates for birthdays, as well as yearly ongoing retention activities.
If you are interested in participating the Attraction and Recruitment Committee, please call the Vulcan Community Health Centre Manager 403-485-3303 and leave your name with her. We are always looking for willing and able volunteers. Terms of service are usually 2 years.