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Minister Dix announces urgent care centre coming to Kelowna

The new centre will open in the fall at 110 Highway 33

B.C. Health Minister Adrian was in Rutland Thursday (March 23) to announce a new Urgent Primary Care Centre (UPCC) for the community.

“It’s going to be a significant success in responding to the needs of this community,” said Dix.

The new centre, which will be located at 110 Highway 33, will staff 31.3 full-time-equivalent positions including family physicians, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, social workers, physiotherapists and life-skills workers.

Dix, who was joined by Kelowna Liberal MLAs, as well as Interior Health (IH) and Regional District Hospital Board (RDHB) officials, said the new centre will connect more patients with timely and comprehensive care.

“In the near future, the residents of Kelowna and surrounding communities will benefit from much-needed increased access to primary care services.”

READ MORE: 1,000 eligible doctors have signed up for B.C.’s new payment model, which starts today: Dix

IH President and CEO Susan Brown pointed out that the Rutland UPCC is the third such facility in Kelowna.

“We really hope that the centre fills the need that is here today for the people in this area,” she said.

RDHB Chair Loyal Wooldridge singled out Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick for his tireless advocacy around healthcare in the community.

“Today is a showcase of that hard work,” said Wooldridge.

Letnick, who noted that it was a tough week for the community with the death of Al Horning and the attack on international student Gagandeep Singh, presented Dix with a Rutland Strong t-shirt.

“This announcement today is great news after a hard week,” said Letnick.

The centre will serve two purposes. The first is to provide urgent primary-care services to those who need to see a healthcare provider within 12 to 24 hours, but do not require going to the emergency department, such as patients with sprains, cuts, high fevers and minor infections.

The second purpose is to help attach more patients to the clinic to provide ongoing team-based primary-care services, including mental health.

When it opens in the fall, the Rutland UPCC will be open from 9:30 a.m. until 8:30 p.m., seven days a week.

READ MORE: B.C. Greens call on B.C. government to address ‘systemic’ healthcare workplace issues


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Gary Barnes

About the Author: Gary Barnes

Journalist and broadcaster for three decades.
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