People in Cranbrook will have increased access to health care thanks to a new urgent and primary care centre (UPCC) opening in November 2021 at 1311 2nd St.
B.C. government officials said the Cranbrook UPCC is a collaboration between Interior Health, the Ministry of Health, the East Kootenay Division of Family Practice and the Ktunaxa Nation.
“By incorporating culturally relevant care, including trauma-informed primary care services, the Cranbrook UPCC will strengthen the relationship and trust between Indigenous people and health-care providers, in addition to improving health outcomes for all people in the region,” said Kathryn Teneese, council chair, Ktunaxa Nation.
“The new UPCC in Cranbrook will offer people better access to comprehensive, team-based health care, closer to home,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health.
“With the support of local health-care teams, our primary care strategy is leveraging community collaboration to strengthen primary care services throughout the province. In Cranbrook, it means regular, ongoing access to primary care providers for people in the region.”
The province said the centre will serve two purposes. The first, providing care for people experiencing non-life-threatening conditions, such as an ankle sprain or a sore throat, who need to see a health-care provider within 12 to 24 hours, but do not require an emergency department.
The second purpose will be attaching patients to a regular primary care provider.
“We look forward to the integration of the Cranbrook UPCC in hopes it will strengthen primary care in the community. Doctors of BC has a strong interest in ensuring people have access to the health-care services they need,” said Dr. Matthew Chow, president, Doctors of BC.
“We also emphasize the importance of measures that strengthen the long-term relationships between patients and their family doctor. These relationships have been shown to improve health outcomes, help avoid preventable illness and reduce the cost of health care.”
Once open, the centre will be available seven days a week, 365 days a year, and through extended hours on evenings and weekends.
“The new urgent and primary care centre planned for Cranbrook will have a significant impact for patients and families living in the community and surrounding area, increasing access to local health services,” said Dr. Doug Cochrane, board chair, Interior Health.
“The team-based approach to care by family physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses and allied health professionals means people living in the area will have added support for their immediate and long-term health needs. Working together with Aboriginal partners and local organizations, the UPCC will provide support to vulnerable populations, connecting people to ongoing primary care services close to home.”
The province said other team-based care supports throughout the community will be integrated with the centre, enhancing primary care service to people in the region.