A new urgent and primary care centre (UPCC) has officially opened at a permanent location in Esquimalt, providing greater access to comprehensive, everyday healthcare.
The permanent new location of the urgent and primary care centre is located at 890 Esquimalt Rd.
According to B.C.’s Ministry of Health, the UPCC will provide care for people experiencing non-life-threatening conditions — and who need to see a healthcare provider in the immediate future — such as an ankle sprain or a sore throat.
The UPCC in Esquimalt will also serve the purpose of attaching patients to a regular primary care provider if they do not have one.
The care centre will be open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., including on statutory holidays.
There is a total team of 11 full-time equivalent healthcare workers, including physicians, nurses, mental health and substance-use consultants and social workers at the centre.
The Ministry of Health says anyone is invited to access the Esquimalt UPCC for same-day, urgent care or non-life-threatening conditions, however, due to COVID-19, patients are asked to call ahead when possible.
“A new, permanent location for primary care in Esquimalt means that more people will have expanded access to the team-based, comprehensive health care they need,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “This is an example of our primary care strategy at work, increasing and improving access to everyday primary health care throughout the province.”
Starting at 8 a.m. each day, people can call to secure an urgent care appointment as required. Patients who do not have access to a telephone can attend in person and, after 8:30 a.m., will be added to the registration queue when they arrive.
The urgent and primary care centre is opening in a phased approach and is expecting to eventually have a full team that will include approximately 23 full-time equivalent healthcare providers.
“This is great news for people in Esquimalt, whose health will benefit from the expanded services and extended hours at the new home for our UPCC,” said Mitzi Dean, MLA for Esquimalt-Metchosin. “More people will get timely treatment at the clinic and those who don’t have a regular primary care provider can get help securing one.”
Island Health will be responsible for operating the new Esquimalt UPCC with the support of the Ministry of Health and the Capital Regional Hospital District.
This is one of the 26 UPCCs announced under the government’s primary care strategy. To date, six UPCCs have been announced in the Island Health region, including Westshore, Nanaimo, James Bay (Victoria), North Quadra (Victoria), Downtown Victoria and Esquimalt.