The County’s physician recruitment coordinator says she is currently in regular contact with seven physicians who are considering relocating to the Highlands.

In a report to an Oct. 26 council meeting, Wendy Welch summarized her last six months of work.

She told council she had sourced a new rental for visiting doctors on Lake Kashagawigamog, giving up a lease on a Harmony Road property. She said it’s a three-bedroom, lower-level walk-out, furnished, with laundry, fully-equipped kitchen and a dock and firepit.

She said she is contacted regularly from community members about housing options and is keeping a file of potential rentals for when the need arises.

She noted five road-side signs are in place and she had received a couple of physician leads, who called after seeing the signs. They are the large billboards that depict a parking space for a canoe at work.

Welch added she had been posting on social media, targeting medical universities, resident groups and other physician recruitment groups. She is gaining followers on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

She noted the County had recently retained a local drone photographer to shoot footage of the hospital and medical building in Haliburton, “highlighting the beautiful lakes and lush green community surrounding them.”

They’ve been added to the physician recruitment website and #myhaliburtonhighlands YouTube channel. She said in future they would expand to include other County medical facilities. They’ve also updated the Halidoc website.

Welch said she also has lunch meetings with residents and learners and gives them a gift basket. As for recruitment events, next up is Nov. 25 at the University of Ottawa.

She’s had pull-up banners at events such as the recent Storm the Trent race at the Haliburton Forest, the Independent in Haliburton, and Dorset Tower over Thanksgiving weekend. She added she will be speaking at the high school this fall.

Referencing the seven candidates, Welch said it, “can often take months or even years as candidates seek out a location that works for them and their families. This regular contact ensures they know we are interested in seeing them practice in the County of Haliburton, and are willing to do whatever we can to assist in the transition.”