Re: "Doctors speak out on wait times: B.C. Medical Association campaign gives Eagle Ridge Hospital a failing grade," Wednesday, March 13.
Emergency rooms wouldn't be as overcrowded as they are if pharmacies were used as a first aid/triage as they are in other countries.
Pharmacists can treat small cuts, burns, etc., prescribe drugs, reassure a person that what they have is minor - at worst they will call an ambulance.
I actually had to go to a night pharmacy on my last vacation abroad for a minor problem, and was checked and treated thoroughly and quickly.
This is not a new service either. My mom was a young pharmacist assistant in the 1940s (in a pharmacy that opened in the 1880s and is still around) and they were already doing it.
Incidentally, pharmacies over there only sell drugs and safe cosmetics - no junk food and hundreds of miscellaneous items that have nothing to do with health and personal care.
In big towns there are teams of "night doctors" that come to a home or a hotel and treat a patient right then and there - or call an ambulance.
In smaller towns doctors used to take turns at doing emergency night visits in private homes. Unfortunately this is now becoming too dangerous for them (they carried a bagful of basic drugs).
J-L Brussac Coquitlam