The B.C. government has unveiled a new urgent and primary care centre in Downtown Victoria which is said to be the largest in the province.
The new centre officially opened on July 19, 2021, and is located in downtown Victoria at 1107 Pandora Ave. and the facility spans a total of 840 square metres (9,045 square feet).
The new urgent and primary care centre (UPCC) will bring together healthcare workers – including family physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses and others – to provide care to patients who currently do not have a family doctor or nurse practitioner, and weekend and after-hours care, taking pressure off hospital emergency departments.
The hours of the centre are currently 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., however, this will expand to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. once the centre is fully staffed and care will be available seven days a week, including statutory holidays.
“We know that people in our region deserve the best possible access to primary care providers,” said Rob Fleming, MLA for Victoria-Swan Lake. “These investments in primary care in Victoria show that government is listening to the needs of residents and is committed to make it easier and faster for them to get the health-care services they need, closer to home.”
In addition to the new UPCC, B.C. announced the establishment of four primary care networks that will serve the Victoria, Saanich, and Oak Bay communities.
The Province says that these primary care networks will link together family practitioner offices in a local community with a range of other healthcare professionals to “provide patients access to a comprehensive range of primary care services from a team of healthcare professionals working together to better meet the needs of individual patients and the community.”
The government says that the four primary care networks will provide patient-centred care for people across Greater Victoria, including James Bay, Fairfield, Oaklands, Fernwood, downtown Victoria, Vic West, Oak Bay, Gordon Head, Shelbourne, Interurban, Tillicum, Quadra and Swan Lake.
“These four primary care networks are bringing the needs of patients and their healthcare workers to the forefront and transforming how we deliver primary care into the future,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “Victoria’s new patient-focused services reflect the needs of the local community and will add capacity across four new PCNs and a new UPCC, linking services to ensure people get the support they need when they need it and where they need it.”
Some of the goals of these networks include providing better access to health care for those with mild to moderate mental health conditions, offering better-coordinated services for families and seniors who are frail and people with complex health issues, enabling more access to comprehensive services for people living in poverty and creating culturally safe care for Indigenous peoples.