Departing physician credited with saving family members’ lives

Julie Lacroix of Ladysmith credits Dr. Vivan Kilvert's medical expertise with helping save the lives of her family members.

Editor:

Thank you to the community of Ladysmith from the Lacroix family.

The last few years have been full of challenges: my own brain surgery, my husband Gary struggling with bowel obstructions from years of surgeries due to Crohn’s disease, my daughter’s car accident injuries, and the scariest, my son’s fifth heart surgery. I’m happy to say he has won the long battle against bacterial endocarditis — infection in his heart — that set in six days after his surgery.  He is doing great now. He will continue to have pulmonary valve replacements every five to 10 years as they deteriorate, but for now he has a much better quality of life.

Our appreciation to the people in this community who have donated funds, time and labour is overwhelming. We have been dealing with these debilitating illnesses for over 20 years and your generosity and kindness have given us hope and emotional support.  Some of you I know, some I never will, but I will never forget the warmth and compassion you all have shared with us.  Thank you all and a huge thank you to our great friend Rowan Butler for reaching out to you on our behalf.

My family is devastated by the loss of our beloved Dr. Kilvert. Along with Dr. Brockley and all the staff at Ladysmith Family Practice Clinic, she has been instrumental in keeping my family alive, literally.

It was Dr. Kilvert’s quick thinking and fast action that got our son treated properly when a post-operative infection compromised his life. Her quick diagnosis and follow through was praised by all the cardiologists and surgeons at BC Children’s Hospital as the infection could quickly have destroyed his new pulmonary valve.

Dr. Kilvert also did what was needed for me after my radical brain surgery resulted in an infection. My neurosurgeon praised the quick reactions of my G.P.

Dr. Kilvert diagnosed my husband’s bowel obstructions early, preventing the need for an additional surgery and a long hospitalization.

As a primary caregiver to a family with many serious health problems, I have been taught by specialists that early intervention is imperative — this requires tests and referrals and I understand that this is what Dr. Kilvert has been criticized for doing so thoroughly.

Should she have ignored my family’s history, the complications would have resulted in much longer hospitalizations and greater costs to our medical system. Not to mention, costing us our lives.

I would urge VIHA to reconsider its decision not to reinstate Dr. Kilvert.

Julie Lacroix

Ladysmith