BC’s family doctors work together and communicate with family doctors throughout Canada to meet your health needs and provide excellent health guidance. Through the BC College of Family Physicians, your family doctors remain committed to lifelong learning and representing you in policy discussions about health.

What We Do

Family doctors are specialists trained to treat the whole person. After completing our undergraduate medical degrees, we complete a two-year residency in family medicine. We are experts at offering care for all parts of the body and mind, all diseases, in all ages and genders, including preventative health care and primary mental health care, as well as the treatment of most illnesses and injuries.

The Doctor-Patient Relationship

The doctor-patient relationship is at the centre of family medicine. We are in partnership with our patients, and will work with you throughout your life to manage your health.

Your family doctor may work in a personal or group practice or as part of a multidisciplinary team with other health care providers. If your family doctor is not able to provide the care you need, he or she will arrange specialized care for you through a referral. Then, your family doctor coordinates with the specialist to ensure he or she has your relevant medical information and to help provide any follow-up treatment you may need.

As your primary health care provider, your family physician also maintains your medical record throughout your life and may communicate on your behalf with your other care providers, with your permission.

Family physicians in BC provide a wide range services including:

  • treatment of common illnesses and injuries
  • preventative care, including disease prevention and health promotion
  • basic emergency services
  • community health
  • primary mental health care
  • palliative and end-of-life care
  • geriatric care, including home health and long-term care
  • pre-natal and maternity care
  • healthy child development
  • youth health
  • rehabilitation
  • weight loss
  • smoking cessation
  • immunizations
  • referrals to/coordination with other levels of care (such as hospitals and specialist care)
  • hospital care
  • emergency room medicine

Where We Work

Family doctors are involved in health care at many diverse levels and in many different environments, including:

  • Solo or group family practices in the community
  • Community health facilities
  • Walk-in clinics
  • Hospitals
  • Emergency rooms
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Hospices
  • Rehabilitation facilities
  • Specialty clinics for maternity, travel medicine, cancer, diabetes etc.
  • Home and community outreach
  • Medical schools
  • Research and diagnostic laboratories