New Urgent Treatment Centre in Fredericton to improve access to primary health care for non-life-threatening medical needs

Horizon’s Fredericton Urgent Treatment Centre will provide improved access and a better experience for patients suffering from non-life-threatening medical needs

FREDERICTON – Patients in the Fredericton area now have improved access to primary health care, thanks to the opening of a new community-based clinic for non-life-threatening medical needs.

Horizon’s Fredericton Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) has opened at 435 Brookside Dr. (inside Brookside Mall) and will help to alleviate pressure on local Emergency Departments.

A team of emergency department physicians, Registered Nurses, and Licensed Practical Nurses will provide care for urgent but non-life-threatening medical needs, such as minor rash/skin conditions, soft tissue injuries, minor allergic reactions, skin infections, extremity injuries, lumps/bumps, abrasions, nosebleeds, minor wounds/lacerations, in addition to medical imaging services, such as X-rays and ultrasounds.

The centre will be open two days a weekMondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. – with the goal of gradually building capacity and expanding coverage to seven days a week next year.

Adopting a patient-centered approach, the centre will initially operate on a first-come, first-served basis (no appointment required).

Over time, it will also transition to a more traditional triage model, where patients experiencing the most acute medical needs, in accordance with the Canadian Triage Acuity Scale (CTAS), would be seen first.

“Partners across the health care system are working to ensure that patients have access to the primary care they need,” said Health Minister Bruce Fitch. “That means giving people access to more points of service when they don’t need to visit an emergency room.”

Operating under the direction of the Emergency Department team from the Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital, the centre was purpose-built to provide safe, high-quality, and timely care for patients with non-life-threatening medical concerns requiring same-day access.

“We are pleased to celebrate the opening of Horizon’s Fredericton Urgent Treatment Centre, and I’d like to sincerely thank everyone who had a role in making this possible,” said Margaret Melanson, Horizon’s interim President and CEO. “This milestone marks a significant step forward in providing accessible and reliable health care for the community and is a testament to our commitment to improving services and meeting the needs of those we serve.”

“Establishing an urgent treatment model in Fredericton will help us better support the care needs of the community in a way that can be reliable and sustainable,” said Dr. Ash McLellan, Horizon’s Medical Director for the Fredericton area. “There has been plenty of hard work and planning from physicians and teams to put this new service into place to improve access to health services to our patients.”

Anyone experiencing symptoms such as chest pains, shortness of breath, signs of a stroke, or mental health concerns should present to the nearest emergency department.

“Establishing this Urgent Treatment Centre in Fredericton is a step in the right direction and will help yield positive results by providing non-emergent care for those who need access but do not need emergency care,” said Dr. Krishna Pulchan, Head of Horizon’s Emergency Medicine department in the Fredericton area.

“We are committed to finding solutions that improve access to care, and this new centre is an exciting development for our community and a testament to our dedication to providing quality health care services to those we serve.”

The concept of urgent treatment centres has been successfully implemented in other provinces, serving as a proven model for improved health care delivery. It also aligns with Horizon’s organizational priority of improving access to emergency/urgent care services.

This initiative is one of various recent and ongoing initiatives to improve access to care in the Fredericton region. Others include:

  • Earlier this year, Horizon’s Fredericton Downtown Community Health Centre expanded its services to include same-day, self-referral appointments with nurse practitioners, which need to be booked ahead of time. This has led to an additional 100 appointments per week, compared to the previous system.
  • Horizon also signed a letter of intent to lease an additional 19,000 sq. ft of space in the Brookside Mall, which will help us establish of a new collaborative primary care clinic.

In following through on the Provincial Health Plan, partners have also been working to increase access to primary care across the province. That includes initiatives like eVisitNB to bring New Brunswickers online virtual health care services, the creation of NB Health Link and increasing the list of ailments that pharmacists can assess and prescribe for at no cost to the patient.

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For more information contact:

Kris McDavid

Media Relations