Primary Care Networks

A Primary Care Network (PCN) is a supportive, clinical network of local primary care services to increase comprehensive care in a geographical area.  A PCN is enabled by a partnership between the local Division of Family Practice and Health Authority, along with local First Nations and Indigenous partners.  

In a PCN, physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, allied health care providers, health authority service providers, and community organizations work together to provide all the primary care services a local population requires.  Together, they:

  • Enhance patient care using a team-based approach to care.
  • Support each other and work to their own strengths.
  • Ensure patients are linked to other parts of the system, including the health authority’s specialized community services programs for high risk and vulnerable population groups.
  • Collectively work to increase access and attachment to primary care.

Participation in a primary care network enables a patient medical home to operate at its full potential. In a PCN, patients get access to timely, comprehensive and coordinated team-based care, guided by eight core attributes.

PCN Core Attributes:

  • Access and attachment to quality primary care
  • Extended hours
  • Same day access to urgent care
  • Advice & information
  • Comprehensive primary care
  • Culturally safe care
  • Coordinated care
  • Clear communication

When participating in a PCN, family physicians can:

  • Provide optimal care for patients with the support of teams, and easily-accessed health authority services.
  • Access expanded services for vulnerable populations and those with complex health conditions.

Primary Care Networks: Overview for BC Family Doctors

The Pacific Northwest Division of Family Practice is currently involved in the planning and implementation stages of five Primary Care Networks (PCNs) in our area.  The five PCN’s include:

  • The Bulkely Valley Witset PCN encompasses the communities of Smithers, Houston, and Witset (and all communities in between)
  • The Coast Mountain PCN provides services to the communities of Terrace, Stewart, Dease Lake and also includes the Nisga’a Valley PCN.
  • Kitimat – Haisla PCN includes the communities of Kitimat and Kitimaat Village. 
  • The Prince Rupert & Coast Tsimshian PCN supports Prince Rupert, Port Edward, and Metlakatla.
  • The Haida Gwaii PCN encompasses all the communities on island, both north & south.