DR. THOMAS BAILEY, IN MEMORIAM
October 2020 marked the one-year anniversary of Dr. Tom Bailey’s passing. We at the LTCI wanted to take a moment to remember both his leadership and friendship.
In addition to being a husband, father, and grandfather, Dr. Bailey was a community family physician providing comprehensive care for patients from cradle-to-grave in British Columbia for over 40 years. He served in many clinical and medical leadership capacities with countless organizations, including President of the College of Family Physicians of BC and of Canada, and Medical Director of Long-term Care at Island Health. Many may not be aware of his extensive leadership work, as all of his efforts were directed towards supporting patients, physicians, and the field of medicine, and he never sought attention or credit for the transformative work he accomplished.
Locally in his role as Medical Director of LTC at Island Health, Tom worked closely with the Divisions of Family Practice to make improvements to primary care within LTC. He co-led the creation and implementation of the TORCH program, helped develop the provincial Long-term Care Initiative (LTCI), co-chaired the Victoria-South Island LTCI Steering Committee and program, and worked alongside many LTC physicians and leaders. He was a wonderful leader and mentor who could always be counted on for insightful advice and thoughtful support. He delighted us with his playful attitude and funny seasonal neckties.
Since his passing, Tom’s LTC vision has continued to come to life in various ways—such as through the implementation of the TORCH medical model at the Summit, and through the system coordination and sustainability work, which aims to ensure we have a healthy local LTC system now and in the future.
As an integral part of the LTC system, Tom held a big vision for excellence and saw the ‘long game' of making improvements in LTC: he embodied the notion of gentle persistence, relentlessly applied to making improvements in the system, with professionalism, wisdom, and humour. He left an amazing legacy that has impacted many and will continue to inspire our work at the LTCI.