People in Burnaby will soon have increased access to team-based health care with the launch of three primary-care networks (PCNs) and the opening of the new Burnaby Urgent and Primary Care Centre (UPCC) in May 2019.
Together, the PCNs and UPCC will recruit approximately 68 new health-care providers over the next three years. This includes 10 general practitioners, 10 new nurse practitioners, three clinical pharmacists and 45 nursing and allied health-care professionals.
The three networks will be the Brentwood/Hastings PCN, Edmonds PCN and Metrotown PCN. With the new and existing providers, they will improve access to care, strengthen support for patients and providers, and see community partners work to attach thousands of patients in Burnaby to regular primary care. A fourth PCN located in the Lougheed region will be developed in the future.
“We know that approximately one in six Burnaby residents have been challenged to find a consistent primary-care provider and care in the evenings and weekends is limited," said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “That is why community partners have worked to create a solution that works for people living in this region. The new Burnaby Urgent and Primary Care Centre and primary-care networks will help address gaps in everyday health care and make sure that residents of Burnaby and the surrounding area have an easier time accessing the care they need.”
Currently, Burnaby has 45 primary-care clinics participating in the PCN and 133 general practitioners. The networks will partner new and existing health-care professionals with the health authority and community organizations as part of a networked, team-based approach to providing care.
The Burnaby Urgent and Primary Care Centre, located in the Edmonds PCN, is the sixth centre to be announced in British Columbia. The centre will open in two phases. The first phase offers extended hours in the evening and on weekends and will increase access to team-based care for a range of primary-care needs. In the second phase, the centre will host an incubator clinic. Incubator clinics support experienced family physicians in mentoring new family physicians, consolidate nursing and allied health resources and work to attach people in need of regular primary care.
In addition, once fully developed, the Metrotown PCN will also form a Centre for Healthy Communities that will support an incubator clinic. Centres for Healthy Communities are hubs for co-location of practitioner, health authority and community services and resources. They will serve as the focal points in the PCN to anchor, integrate and support services and providers to serve the entire neighbourhood.
“Team-based care that responds to the needs of each community, as identified by those working in them, is going to be the backbone of the new primary-care system in B.C. and will be how patients' everyday health-care needs are met today, tomorrow and beyond,” said Dix. “These networks are part of the work we are doing in communities throughout the province to strengthen services and improve access to everyday health care.”
The three PCNs will focus on the specific needs of the community and improve health services identified as high priority for the community, including:
- enhanced access to regular, extended and after-hours services for comprehensive primary care;
- improved access to primary-care services for priority populations including seniors and immigrants; and
- team-based resources to better meet the needs of low- to moderate-complexity patients requiring specialized services including for frail seniors and mental health and addictions.
“The creation of teams and increased attachment rates have been developed with health-care professionals and service agencies at a community level. As a result, this is a plan that is reflective and responsive to the care needs of the people they serve, and it will build and refine over time as recruitment and services ramp up,” said Dix.
The PCNs will operate in close partnership and collaboration with the division of family practice and Fraser Health primary care networks being implemented in Fraser northwest communities, as previously announced Feb. 24, 2019.
The Ministry of Health will provide approximately $12 million in annual operating funding to the Burnaby networks and UPCC by the third year, as new positions are added and patients are attached.
To learn more about the Province’s primary health-care strategy, visit:
To learn more about the Fraser northwest primary care networks, visit:
Three backgrounders follow.