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Surrey Urgent Primary Care Centre to open this fall

Last Updated Jun 7, 2018 at 5:20 pm PST

(Courtesy the Fraser Health Authourity)
Summary

The goal is to relieve pressure on Surrey Memorial's emergency room

'Inevitably if you are able to provide service to more people, wait times should come down': Doctor

SURREY (NEWS 1130) – Wait times at Surrey’s only emergency room may soon get a little shorter thanks to a new urgent primary care centre.

The goal is to relieve pressure on Surrey Memorial’s emergency room by giving people who need non-emergency medical care, many of whom do not have a primary physician, a place to go. Those procedures could include lacerations, earaches, back pain, and sore throats.

“It is really exciting for us, but it’s more exciting for the 78,000 people in Surrey that don’t have direct access to a family doctor,” Premier John Horgan said at Thursday’s announcement. “And those who are lucky enough to have a doctor can’t always access that physician on weekends of in the evenings.”

The facility is expected to open this fall in the Surrey Centre 2 building directly across the street from the hospital.

Surrey’s centre a part of the NDP’s primary care plan and one of 10 urgent care centres the party promised during the election to open within the next year.

Dr Peter Barnsdale helped oversee the facility’s development.

“Inevitably if you are able to provide service to more people, wait times should come down. To be more predictive than that about exact times would be very hard,” he said.

He says it also means up to 5,000 people could have a family doctor or get continued medical care from trained professionals.

“The new Surrey Urgent Primary Care Centre connects people directly to a team-based approach to health care, which will collaboratively address their health and social needs in a single setting, before emergency interventions are needed,” said Michael Marchbank, Fraser Health’s president and CEO.