Expectant parents in the Cariboo-Chilcotin will have improved access to maternity care in a new clinic at Cariboo Memorial Hospital.
Interior Health and the Central Interior Rural Division of Family Practice have partnered to offer a maternity care clinic, now accepting referrals as of Tuesday, July 11.
“We are thrilled about the opening of the maternity clinic and what it means for expectant parents, babies and families in the community,” said Dr. Ivan Scrooby, family medicine maternity physician in Williams Lake in a news release.
“The dedicated local facility will allow us to see patients without a referral, provide more comprehensive care, and work as a collaborative team to achieve better outcomes for patients.”
The maternity clinic will be open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and staffed by four physicians who will provide full scope maternity care.
It will have a centralized referral system and will also be supported by a full-time licensed practical nurse (LPN) and a medical office assistant (MOA).
Maternity patients will be seen with or without a family care provider and the clinic will accept self-referrals.
Prenatal care, labour and delivery and postpartum support among other services will be part of the comprehensive care offered.
IH and the Division noted they are also considering ways to expand the services in the clinic to offer other women’s health-care services.
The clinic is also expected to help attract and retain health-care providers by creating a sustainable and supportive practice environment.
“Collaboration between IH and the Division to establish the maternity clinic demonstrates a joint commitment to addressing the challenges faced by rural communities in accessing care close to home,” said Jill Zirnhelt, executive director, Central Interior Rural Division of Family Practice.
“Both organizations are dedicated to creating diverse opportunities for providers to attract and retain new health-care professionals in the area.”
Expectant parents without a primary provider can directly book an appointment by calling 250-302- 3294.
The clinic is located on the main floor of CMH in room 1207 (behind the main reception desk).