calgaryareadocs.com site allows families to search by physician gender, languages spoken
CALGARY (Friday, February 9) – Patients looking for a family doctor in the Calgary area can now specify whether they’re searching for a male or female physician – and even review which languages they speak – at the click of a mouse.
More than 390,000 people have used the Find a Doctor website calgaryareadocs.com to help them find a family doctor since it was relaunched by the seven Calgary-area Primary Care Networks in 2015. Now, it’s even easier for patients to find the right doctor for their family thanks to an enhanced search tool that allows users to search by physician gender and languages spoken, as well as clinic location.
The goal of the website is to help ensure all Calgary-area residents have access to a family doctor who can help care for their everyday health needs and connect them with the right health care providers and teams. The user-friendly service is free to use and can also be accessed by calling Health Link at 8-1-1.
“It has never been easier for patients in the Calgary area to find the right doctor for their family,” said Dr. Linda Slocombe, of the Calgary zone Primary Care Networks. “Patients have told us that the gender of their doctor and the languages they speak, as well as location, can be important factors in developing a longstanding relationship with a family physician. That relationship, when a patient has a regular contact with a single family doctor, has been proven to result in improved health and quality of life for the patient, as well as reduced hospital visits and significant cost savings for the health care system.”
There are two ways to use the website. Visitors can self-search for a doctor where they live or work, or wherever is most convenient. There are no delays or long waits. Once patients find a doctor accepting patients in their area, they can call the clinic and request an appointment. Patients can also fill in an online form and ask a PCN to help them find them a family doctor.
A total of 1,579 doctors are listed on calgaryareadocs.com, of which about 51 per cent are female. More than 40 different languages are spoken by all those listed and around one-quarter of all physicians are currently taking patients. The website received more than 25,000 hits in January 2018, with almost 10,000 clicks on the ‘View Phone Number’ option.
Recent updates to calgaryareadocs.com also include clearer map results, the ability to search within a certain radius of a community or address and feedback options to ensure users are successful in finding a doctor through the website.
The website, developed by Calgary-area PCNs in partnership with Alberta Health Services, was first launched in 2010. Research shows patients who have a longstanding relationship with a family doctor are healthier as they age and live longer. In Alberta, most family physicians are members of Primary Care Networks (PCNs). First established in 2003, PCNs improve access to family doctors and strengthen the services offered at clinics. There are seven PCNs in the Calgary-area and together they help to provide care for about 1.3 million patients in urban Calgary and surrounding communities including Airdrie, Okotoks, Canmore, Banff and Lake Louise.
ABOUT PRIMARY CARE NETWORKS: Primary Care Network services and programs are developed in partnership with family doctors and Alberta Health Services. They are designed to meet the everyday health needs of patients in Alberta. There are seven PCNs in Calgary and the surrounding areas and together they serve about 1.3 million patients.
ABOUT ALBERTA HEALTH SERVICES: Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.
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Senior Communications Manager
Calgary Foothills Primary Care Network