Urgent & Primary Care Centres
An Urgent and Primary Care Centre is available when you have a non-life threatening condition and need to see a health-care provider within 12 to 24 hours, but do not have a family doctor or nurse practitioner, can not access a walk-in clinic, or are unable to get an appointment with your regular primary care provider that day.
An Urgent and Primary Care Centre is not an emergency department – it can not treat people with serious illnesses or life-threatening conditions. If you have a health emergency that requires immediate care, call 9-1-1 or go to your hospital emergency department right away.
Services at Urgent Primary Care Centres vary depending on the location, but you can be treated for a number of urgent health concerns such as:
- Minor pain including sore throats and earaches
- Minor injuries including sprains and small cuts needing stitches
- Minor fevers, infections and upset stomach
- Sexual health
- Mental health including anxiety and mild to moderate depression
An Urgent and Primary Care Centre is not intended to replace your family doctor or care provider(s) as your first point of contact for health concerns, and it does not replace emergency departments for life-threatening illnesses or injuries. Rather, it is intended to be an additional service in the community, working together with your other services to provide appropriate urgent care when you need it.
For most health concerns, including referrals and prescription renewals, the best option is to call your primary care provider (family doctor or nurse practitioner) first. Your primary care provider knows you and has the best understanding of your past and current primary care needs.
Urgent and Primary Care Centres use a team-based approach and include a variety of health-care professionals who closely work together to provide your care. Depending on the nature of your injury or illness, you will be seen by the provider(s) best able to meet your needs. This may be a physician, a nurse practitioner, a registered nurse, or another health professional, such as a social worker, mental health worker or physiotherapist.
An Urgent and Primary Care Centre may also help assist with connecting to a family doctor or nurse practitioner for those who do not have a primary care provider. While waiting to find a family doctor, the Urgent and Primary Care Centre may provide your ongoing care needs. In some cases Urgent and Primary Care Centres will become a patient’s long-term patient medical home. This will be determined with your local Urgent and Primary Care Center team.
Urgent and Primary Care Centre open in Cranbrook
The Numa Kakin' drum group from the Ktunaxa Nation helped to open the new Cranbrook Urgent and Primary Care Centre in December 2021. The centre is open for patients needing urgent care, who don't need to attend the emergency department.
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