A new West Shore Community Health Centre will open on Goldstream Avenue in Colwood in the spring.
A team of health-care providers, including family doctors, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, social workers, community health workers and an elder in residence, will offer primary care and health and social supports to those living in Colwood, Langford, Highlands and Metchosin.
The centre, at 324 Goldstream Ave. in Colwood, will offer 16 exam rooms and six virtual care stations and support areas.
The facility will be governed, owned and operated by Pacific Centre Family Services Association in partnership with Island Health.
West Shore residents need better access to consistent health care in the community, Mitzi Dean, MLA for Esquimalt-Metchosin and minister of Children and Family Development, said Friday.
“At the centre, health-care providers will work together to provide comprehensive and patient-centred services to patients, so they can live their healthiest lives,” she said.
Services will focus on people with mental-health conditions, substance-use disorders and multiple chronic health conditions and serve more vulnerable populations such as seniors, Indigenous peoples and gender-diverse people.
The team will include nine physicians, three nurse practitioners, three or four registered nurses, a social worker, four community health workers and one elder.
It’s expected the centre will be open Mondays to Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The B.C. government will provide approximately $4 million in operating budget once the centre reaches full capacity, and as much as $1.9 million for one-time startup costs, said Dean.
Community health centres are community governed, not-for-profit organizations.
“We’ve listened to people in the Western Communities and are using our primary care strategy to build on the good work community organizations are already doing in the region,” Health Minister Adrian Dix said. “The West Shore Community Health Centre will play a vital role to help connect residents who have been struggling to access a family doctor with the health care they need, when they need it, closer to home.”
Shawna Adams, board chair of the PCFSA, said the centre will provide “much needed, trauma-informed” integrated primary and mental-health care services to underserved individuals and families with complex needs.
Dr. Randal Mason, co-chair of the south Island division of family practice, said the new centre is a great example of collaboration between government and community organizations to develop a care system for people who face barriers or need additional support beyond what may be offered in traditional family practice.