Many people in British Columbia (BC) struggle to access primary care in their community. Recent estimates suggest that 1 in 6 British Columbians do not have access to a family physician. This is problematic, as research shows that access to comprehensive, community-based primary care can improve the health of populations and reduce overall costs to health care systems. Insufficient access to family doctors has persisted despite more and more family doctors graduating and starting to work in BC.
The Capacity & Access Measures in Primary Care (CAMP) project builds on previous work that examined the structure of primary care practices and described practice characteristics. CAMP evolved from this work with the intent to provide an accurate description of primary care organization at the clinic level.
CAMP focuses on the development and refinement of useful tools, such as the Clinic List, to provide the key elements for an accurate description of how primary care is currently organized, at the clinic level. The Clinic List Algorithm was developed to help systematically record where primary care is delivered within a region. The Clinic List Algorithm was then applied to administrative and publicly available data to compose an accurate listing of primary care clinics within British Columbia. This tool also allows for a greater knowledge of regional primary care services, and utilizes the clinic as the unit of analysis for more accurate health resource planning.