FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 11, 2024
Island Health secures home for future growth of primary care services in Ucluelet
Ucluelet – Island Health is taking steps to improve access to and support future growth of important health-care services for people living in Ucluelet and surrounding regions through the development of a primary and community care centre.
Island Health has entered into a 10-year lease for soon-to-be-built clinic space located at 2094 Peninsula Road in Ucluelet. Once completed, the centre will serve as a hub for integrated community-based and primary care services.
“The people living in Ucluelet and surrounding areas will have improved contact, collaboration and communications with their health care providers through this new health centre,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “The Ucluelet community care centre will provide a range of integrated health services, and build on the many things we are doing improve access to primary care and strengthen our health care system across the province.”
“One of the challenges we face when working to expand health-care services in remote regions is finding appropriate clinical space to give our patients, clients, staff, and care providers the best experience possible,” said Leah Hollins, Island Health Board Chair. “This long-term lease agreement should provide certainty to people living in the region and our partners that we are committed to growing primary care services through this centre for years to come.”
The centre will serve as a home for Island Health’s community-based services in the region, including Community Health Services, Mental Health and Substance Use and Public Health. There will also be a lab. The central location will benefit clients and patients by providing easier connection to multiple services and programs, while also promoting team-based care and communication between care providers.
As part of the ongoing work of enhancing primary care services in the region, it is Island Health’s goal to locate other primary care providers in the centre, which could include nurse practitioners and physicians. We look forward to working closely with our partners, including the Ministry of Health, First Nations Health Authority, and local care providers to continue growing primary care across the West Coast.
The leased space was identified through a Request for Proposals process. The successful proponent will be responsible for all costs related to construction and development of the leased space. A development permit for the project was approved on October 23, 2023, and it is anticipated the centre will open in Summer 2025.
What people are saying about the future primary and community care centre:
Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Health
“Ucluelet is a growing community and with that comes growing health care needs. This new centre will help meet those demands and will make primary care services easily accessible to residents of Ucluelet and the surrounding areas. This will help strengthen health care services for the entire region.”
Josie Osborne, MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim
“Having a purpose-built centre in Ucluelet to provide integrated health services for the people is a huge benefit for people not only living in Ucluelet, but also Macoah, Millstream and Hitacu. This new facility will make it easier for residents and patients to access the quality health care they need, and it will also support physicians, allied care providers, and staff who will use the hub. The centre is incredibly welcome news for the fast growing West Coast region.”
Mayor Marilyn McEwen, District of Ucluelet
“The District of Ucluelet is very fortunate to have Island Health facilitate the build of a primary and community care centre in Ucluelet. This new clinic space has been on our wish list for over a decade, and our local physicians as well as travelling specialists will very much enjoy working in a beautiful new building. Community Health, Primary Care and Mental Health remain high priorities for this council, including assistance for aging in place, which this new facility will certainly provide through optimum health care for all ages.”
Dr. Carrie Marshall, Family Physician, Ucluelet Medical Clinic
“The physicians are excited to hear of the approval of a new primary and community care health centre in Ucluelet. This is an important, collaborative step between physicians and Island Health to expand team-based primary care services to residents of Ucluelet, Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ First Nation, and surrounding areas. We look forward to partnering with Island Health on developing this critical piece of primary care infrastructure for the West Coast.”
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About Island Health:
Island Health provides health and care services to more than 885,000 people on Vancouver Island, the islands in the Salish Sea and the Johnstone Strait, and mainland communities north of Powell River. With more than 30,000 health care professionals, including more than 3,000 doctors, nurse practitioners midwives and dentists that make up our Medical Staff – as well as 1,000 volunteers, and the dedicated support of 12 foundations and 19 active auxiliaries, Island Health delivers a broad range of health services, including: public health services, primary health care, home and community care, mental health and substance use services, acute care in hospitals, and much more across a huge and geographically diverse region.