A new North Vancouver Urgent and Primary Care Centre will open by the end of September on the second floor of 221 Esplanade West, the provincial government announced today.
Spread over 6,500 square feet, it will include 13 exam rooms, a treatment room, three stretched bays and a waiting room. It will be open round the year, Monday to Saturday from 8 am to 10 pm, and on Sundays and statutory holidays from 9 am to 5 pm. 14 full-time practitioners, including general practitioners, nurse practitioners, registered nurses and social workers, will be working at the centre.
The province will lease the space from Seymour Health Group. It will be operated by Vancouver Coastal Health in partnership with Ministry of Health, the North Shore Division of Family Practice and Seymour Health Group, and with support of Squamish Nation and Tsleil-Waututh Nation.
The centre will provide urgent primary care for more than 35,000 estimated patient visits each year by 2023 from North Vancouver, West Vancouver and Bowen Island as well as Lions Bay.
In 2017-2018, 11,490 emergency visits by North Shore residents to Lions Gate Hospital were considered by health authority as non-emergency.
The centre will care for people with same-day, non-life-threatening injuries and illnesses when they are unable to see a family doctor or a health-care provider. North Shore residents will be able to visit the clinic for sprains and strains, cuts, wounds or skin conditions, high fever, infections (including chest, ear and urinary tract), asthma attacks, new or worsening pain, dehydration or constipation, and less serious child illnesses and injuries.
The centre will also offer assessment and treatment for minor illnesses such as ear aches, abdominal pain, skin rashes and infections and urinary tract infections. It will offer on-site or close access to X-rays, blood tests, etc.
Besides serving patients who don’t need emergency services but need to see a doctor within 12 to 24 hours, the centre also has another purpose — it will help patients who don’t have a family doctor connect with a regular primary care provider. There are 33,000 such people on the North Shore.
The third such centre to open in Greater Vancouver, the North Shore centre is a $1.95 million capital investment with a one-time startup cost of $115,000 and an annual staffing and operating cost of $3.378 million.
“This new urgent and primary care centre is something that people on the North Shore really need, and I thank all of our community partners for working collaboratively for a facility that will meet local residents public health-care requirements quickly, which is great,” said Bowinn Ma, North Vancouver-Lonsdale MLA.
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