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Heart your parts with Opt Fernie
Options for Sexual Health (Opt) is encouraging Elk Valley residents to come out to their local Opt clinic for a special night.
With their Heart Your Parts campaign, Opt is taking 52 weeks to host an enhanced drop-in session at each of their 52 clinics. Coming to the Elk Valley Hospital on Tuesday, January 28, Opt Fernie will host their regular weekly clinic, with a few extra features.
“This clinic, because there's extra funding, we're able to allow for a little bit of pampering going on as your sexual health needs are being met,” explained Sue Bannatyne, a registered nurse supervisor who works at the clinic and provides education in the community. “We've got two massage therapists that are going to be available and then we have some refreshments and prizes available as well.”
Regular Opt Fernie services will still be available, including pap screening, STI screening and treatment, pregnancy testing and counselling, and birth control counselling and supplies.
For anyone who might be a little shy, Bannatyne reinforced that the clinic is completely confidential and that guests are welcome as well.
“Anyone can bring a friend with them and they can go through some of the counselling with a friend if they would prefer that,” she said.
“Some people bring in a parent if they're more comfortable with that. You can come in and just get some information and then return to another clinic if you need to, whatever would make it more comfortable.”
A doctor, registered nurse, and volunteers will be on hand for counselling, advice, and treatment. Sexual health resources are available for free for residents with a provincial health care plan. For residents of Quebec or non-Canadians, the costs are $30 to $50, depending on the services and tests.
The clinic fills up quickly and Bannatyne encourages anyone interested in coming to allow themselves a little extra time.
“The clinic is quite busy,” she remarked. “It is drop-in but sometimes we get quite a lot of drop-ins right at the very start so just be prepared that it can sometimes take a bit of time, but it is a great service.”
Opt Fernie's Heart Your Parts clinic will be on Tuesday, January 28, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm, at the Elk Valley Hospital.