Interior Health is celebrating the opening of a temporary primary care clinic in Lytton, saying the area will now have improved health care services while planning work on a permanent replacement for the facility destroyed in a devastating 2021 wildfire continues.
The new primary care clinic is located on St. George Road across from the Tl’kemtsin Health Centre, with Interior Health leasing the space from Lytton First Nation.
B.C. Minister of Health Adrian Dix said the new facility will employ an Indigenous patient navigator who will provide direct patient and family support, including access to traditional ceremonies and healing practices.
“Re-establishing health services and connecting patients to a primary care provider has been a high priority and one of many steps in rebuilding Lytton after the devastation by wildfires,” Dix said.
“I would like to recognize the hard work and dedication of the Interior Health and Lytton staff, health-care providers, and the Indigenous health partners and leaders in the community who have worked together to make this possible.”
According to Interior Health, the clinic offers physician visits, mental health and substance use services, home health and public health services.
The facility will be open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be staffed by two physicians who will see patients on a rotating basis, as well as support staff and two registered nurses, who will assess patients and co-ordinate care.
The clinic will be operated by Interior Health and will serve the community while planning and construction for a permanent health facility continues over the next several years.
“We’re very grateful to Lytton First Nation for making this possible and for working together with us to deliver health services in the area,” said Susan Brown, Interior Health president and CEO.
“We want to also thank them for opening space within the Tl’kemtsin Health Centre for more than a year between May 2022 and August 2023 so that Interior Health could re-establish primary care services in the community and plan for this new temporary clinic after the 2021 wildfire.”
A permanent health facility to replace the St. Bartholomew’s Health Centre, destroyed in the 2021 wildfire, is also underway and will be located within the Village.
“The opening of the temporary building is a welcomed event,” said Debbie Abbott, executive director, Nlaka’pamux Nation Tribal Council.
“Now the members of the Nlaka’pamux communities along with the Village of Lytton and others can look forward to the service delivery and support that is critically important to all.”
Interior Health says it has engaged with community and health-care partners on re-establishing health services for the past year to ensure ideas, concerns and questions are addressed.
"Opening this temporary clinic is an important milestone in restoring medical services for all community members”, said Lytton mayor Denise O'Connor.
"We look forward to being involved in discussions to plan for construction of Lytton's permanent health-care facility.