This week Salmon Arm opened the doors on a new health and wellness centre that aims to support seniors living with complex health needs.
Interior Health and local physicians through the Shuswap-North Okanagan Division of Family Practice partnered to establish the centre with the goal of providing full-circle care for their clients.
“Our focus is on the whole person and their care goals,” says Dr. Kate McCarroll, a family physician with expertise in senior’s care.
McCarroll spearheaded this wellness centre project with the local Division of Family Practice which supports the centre by providing the space as well as training for physicians and staffing support.
The new health and wellness centre in Salmon Arm will include a roster of physicians, nurses, dietitians, social workers, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, rehabilitation therapists, pharmacists and other staff as the need arises, stated a news release issued by Interior Health.
“I’m excited to be part of a high-functioning team that is committed to helping seniors remain independent and live well,” McCarroll says. “Connecting clients with appropriate support and information early on is an important part of this approach.”
Another goal of the centre will be to help connect seniors to services in the community that help them live independently and access assistance close to home.
Vivian Asham was the centre’s first client and was referred to the centre by her doctor. She has worked with several members of the team and so far is optimistic as to how the health and wellness centre will be helpful to her.
“It has been a very positive experience,” Asham says. “It is nice that everyone is all in one place. I know the location well and I don’t have to leave town. After my appointment, the physiotherapist came right to my home and provided strengthening exercises. We feel like we are getting to know the team and everyone is friendly and helpful.”
Beyond the clients and staff, this initiative has also received support from health officials including B.C.’s Health Minister Adrian Dix, who praised the access it provides to specialized care for local residents. Interior Health board chair Dr. Douglas Cochrane also noted it will be a great learning opportunity for specialized seniors care.
The Salmon Arm Seniors Health and Wellness Centre supports the Government of B.C.’s primary health-care strategy, which is focused on delivering faster, team-based care to British Columbians in all parts of the province.
As part of this, government is implementing primary care networks, including urgent primary care centres and community health centres to help coordinate care and improve access to services. Government is also addressing the shortage of primary care providers in the province by providing funding for up to 200 new general practitioners and 200 nurse practitioners to work in a renewed primary care system.
The Salmon Arm Seniors Health and Wellness Centre is located at Suite 4, 781 Marine Park Drive, in the Marine Park Plaza. For information about seniors care within Interior Health, visit www.interiorhealth.ca. For information about the Divisions of Family Practice, visit www.divisionsbc.ca.