Front Lines: Celebrating Northern BC’s Health Care Practitioners

March 30. 2011

This is a book about people from many walks of life with varied skills. There are traditional healers, community health workers, nurses, and family and specialist physicians who not only care for others but pass their wisdom and skills to the next generation. The stories told by caregivers in the North become legends.

With those words, Dr. David Snadden presents the foreword in a new book produced by the Northern Medical Program. Called Front Lines: Portraits of Caregivers in Northern British Columbia, the book captures the legendary stories of 40 health care workers in northern BC. The practitioners include Dr Tracy Morton, who kayaks to work each day on Haida Gwaii; Julie Ephrom, who left California nearly 40 years ago to be a nurse in Vanderhoof; Charles Helm, who is passionate believer in health and people’s connection to nature; and Lisa Sam of Nak’azdli, who won the top national award last year for nurses working on reserves.

Lisa is one of five UNBC grads featured in the book. In addition, the articles about each person were written by another UNBC graduate – Sarah de Leeuw – a two-time winner of a CBC literary award and a Northern Medical Program faculty member. Each person profiled in the book was also photographed by Tim Swanky, who has been a photographer at UNBC for more than 20 years.
“A special feature of this book is that the proceeds from the sale of each copy will go to the Northern Medical Programs Trust,” says Dr. Snadden, who is the head of the Northern Medical Program. “In this way, this book will help to educate and produce the next generation of amazing health care practitioners who will be shaped by this magnificent land and the remarkable people who live here.”

Published by Creekstone Press of Smithers, the book is available in bookstores around northern BC, including the UNBC Bookstore. The cost is $32.  

Two official launches are planned:
  • Saturday, April 2, at 2pm in the Dr. Donald Rix Northern Health Sciences Centre at UNBC
  • Saturday, April 30, at 2pm in the Elephant’s Ear café in Terrace
The profiled caregivers:

Haida Gwaii: Tracy Morton, Diane Brown, Buffy Watson, Kerry Laidlaw
Prince Rupert: Judy Rea, Sheila Gordon-Payne
Kitamaat Village – Lucille Harms
Terrace: Francis Osei-Tutu, Cheryl and Scott Spencer, Lynn Hughes, Gayle and Geoff Appleton
Dease Lake: David Beaulieu, Philip Clark
The Hazeltons: Charlie Eckfeldt, Debbie Sullivan, Peter Newbery
Smithers: Biz Bastian, Daphne Hart
Fraser Lake: John and Sarah Pawlovich
Nak’azdli: Lisa Sam
Vanderhoof: Julie Ephrom
Prince George: Nadine Caron and Patrick Turner, Karin Gerlach, Winston Bishop, Louise Creyke, Darlene McIntosh, In
ban Reddy, Barbie Everett, Rachel Boulding, Tammy Attia, Suzanne Molnar
Quesnel: Andrew Sear, Shanda Rojas
McBride: Michael Jackson
Tumbler Ridge: Charles Helm
Dawson Creek: Stephen Ashwell
Fort St. John: Becky Temple, Val Lamb, Michael Wright, Paul Mackey