Programming Connection

Chronic Health Navigation Program 

ASK Wellness Centre
Kamloops and Merritt, British Columbia
2014

Challenges

  1. Structural financial barriers. The Chronic Health Navigation Program supports vulnerable people on fixed incomes. User fees for services are a significant barrier to the work of navigators. Clients do not necessarily have full coverage for the services or medications they need. ASK Wellness Centre has developed a small fund to cover the cost of these fees so that clients can access the healthcare services they need.
  2. Healthcare provider education. Especially in smaller communities outside of Kamloops, healthcare providers have not had as much education on the social determinants of health, HIV and hepatitis C as their peers in larger centres, and this can sometimes pose a barrier between clients and adequate healthcare.
  3. Lack of services. While Kamloops is one of the largest centres in the interior of British Columbia, there are few HIV or hepatitis C specialists in the area.
  4. Inequity of health services. In the rural areas and communities surrounding Kamloops, comprehensive health services are insufficient to meet demand, and this can lead to health inequities among community members.