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Stories from BC’s Hospital Front Lines – The Missing Voices

Briefing #4 Friday 19  November, Noon

Amid the crisis that has arrived with the extreme weather event, the floods and mudslides caused by the “atmospheric river”, BC’s hospitals have been described as “in crisis” too, by front line doctors, nurses, and other hospital workers. Protect Our Province BC set out to hear their stories, to find out how health care workers are doing while shouldering the burden of the pandemic, and what they suggest that both the public and BC authorities do to help support them.

In the context of the wider emergency that the province is reeling from, it is important that our hospitals have the capacity to take on the extra challenges that climate emergencies have on our communities. Unfortunately, that is not present, POP BC has discovered.

To report on its findings, “Protect Our Province BC” (  will host its fourth live briefing on Friday, November 19th, at  12 pm (noon).  URLs for public access to the briefing (and for special press-only access to ask questions) are provided below. 

Using a web-form that allowed health care professionals in BC hospitals to recount their professional and personal experiences providing care in the pandemic, Protect our Province BC collected over 200 anonymous responses. There were a wide variety of professions represented, from nurses, care aids, unit clerks, physicians, and laboratory technicians.  

This image is a first attempt at summarizing those 200 replies. Dominant themes identified here include  moral and professional distress, anxiety and the lasting emotional harm experienced by these health care professionals in our hospitals. 

Health Workers Wordle
Health Workers Wordle

Our fourth briefing will allow you to hear firsthand from some of these voices. What has their experience been with caring for patients during this ordeal?  

Our guests include Dr. David Forrest, Dr. Jeffrey Eppler,  Sarah (RN, pseudonym)  and Dr. Brenda Hardie (family physician and moderator).  We will intersperse interviews with these clinicians and some of the responses we obtained from our web form. Dr. Forrest is an Intensive Care Physician in Nanaimo, and Dr.  Eppler is an Emergency  Physician in Kelowna. Sarah is a nurse from a BC health authority who needs anonymity to ensure her forthrightness is not used against her.  Dr. Brenda Hardie is a Family Physician in Vancouver. 

For direct access to first-hand quotes and stories from all of the submissions to our webform by BC hospital workers, please visit our website here:

Facilitator: Dr Brenda Hardie, Family Physician, Vancouver


  • Dr. David Forrest, ICU Physician, Nanaimo
  • Dr. Jeffrey Eppler,  ER Physician in Kelowna
  • Sarah (RN, pseudonym) a nurse providing clinical care in a BC Health Authority

Protect Our Province BC is a grassroots group of physicians, nurses, health scientists, health policy specialists and community advocates. We are working together to help people in BC stay safe by sharing accurate information about the COVID-19 pandemic in BC, and advocating for evidence-based policies. Our ultimate goal is to end this pandemic through a vaccines-plus strategy that includes ventilation, better masks, and improved testing and contact tracing.

Subsequent briefings will be scheduled with dates to be announced. Briefings will include both analysis on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic in BC and expert presentations on a variety of pandemic-related topics.

Archived Briefings from Protect Our Province BC

The standard PoP BC mountain background with the PoP logo and the text:
“If we had an epidemic of people with broken limbs and we saw people in plasters and crutches, it would be more evident. But there is a lot of disability that is happening, which is a hidden disability often, which is why we need to talk about it more, for people to understand what the consequences are. And that will help to make better decisions.” – Lynette
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Date: Wednesday, March 1 2023 at 2:00 PM PST A conversation with Protect Our Province BC doctors about Paxlovid and access to this useful Covid medication in BC Join Dr. Susan Kuo and Dr. Lyne Filiatrault of Protect Our Province BC on Wednesday, March 1, 2023, 2 pm, for a conversation about Paxlovid.  BC is… Continue reading Mar 1, 2023: Paxlovid: Why Should You Care?
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Date: Friday, Feb 3, 2023 at 1:30 PM PST Ever get the feeling we’re not getting the real story about COVID?Apparently “the pandemic is over!” yet it seems like everyone you know is ill or has a family member who is, while schools have multiple classes merged together because of so many teachers are out… Continue reading Feb 3, 2023: COVID Reality Check with Dr. Sanjiv Gandhi

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This is the first time I have ever written a letter to my MLA. As a constituent who is a healthcare professional, a parent, and a recent cancer survivor, I feel compelled to reach out after the removal of mask mandates in BC hospitals, and I ask you, as my elected representative, to hear and, I hope, understand how serious this issue is, and how urgently change is needed in our provincial government’s pandemic management strategy.
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Now is not the time to remove indoor masks protections in spaces where vulnerable British Columbians seek medical care. No one should come to the hospital for one condition and leave with a COVID-19 infection. Or, not leave the hospital, and die from Covid? A recent leak from the Victorian Health Department, Australia suggested a 10% or more mortality for patients who acquired COVID-19 in hospital between January and October 2022.