Staff shortage causes 26 hour emergency department closure at South Okanagan General Hospital

ER closing for 26 hours

Limited physician availability at the South Okanagan General Hospital has once again closed off emergency room services for Oliver and area residents.

Interior Health advised on Friday that ER services will be unavailable from 4 p.m. Friday, Oct 20 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 21. Patients can access care at Penticton Regional Hospital during this time.

All other inpatient services will continue as normal.

The province announced a permanent funding commitment this week to help stabilize physician coverage.

During the ER closure, people in the community who need life-threatening emergency care (i.e., chest pains, difficulty breathing, severe bleeding) should always call 911 for transport to the nearest available and appropriate facility.

Anyone unsure whether an emergency room visit is warranted can call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1, or visit www.HealthLinkBC.ca for non-emergency health information from nurses, dietitians and pharmacists 24 hours a day, seven days per week.

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