Island Health is advising community residents and visitors to the area of the following temporary emergency department (ED) closure:
- Port Hardy Hospital (PHH) ED will be closed overnights from 5 p.m. to 7 a.m. beginning the evening of December 22 through to the morning of January 9, 2023. PHH ED will remain open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day during the overnight closure.
Port McNeill Hospital ED will remain open 24/7, unless otherwise announced. During this time of emergency department closure, all other inpatient services will continue as normal at PHH and the adjacent long-term care home.
This service interruption is due to limited staff availability related to the ongoing health human resource challenges being experienced in many rural and remote regions of B.C. and Canada combined with decreased staff availability traditionally experienced during the holiday season. This closure will support Island Health to consolidate staffing to ensure consistent emergency department services during the day in Port Hardy and 24/7 in Port McNeill.
Anyone experiencing a medical emergency while the ED is closed should call 911 or, if possible, proceed to Port McNeill Hospital ED. Do not go to the ED during the hours it is closed, as this will delay your access to care. Island Health and BC Emergency Health Services have protocols in place to ensure patients calling 911 are transported to an appropriate alternate site.
If you are unsure if you are experiencing a medical situation requiring a visit to an emergency department, confidential health information and advice from a registered nurse is available toll free, 24/7 by calling HealthLink BC at 811.
First Nations communities and individuals can also access the First Nations Health Authority’s First Nations Virtual Doctor of the Day services from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 7 days a week. Indigenous people and their family members can access the program to address their health and wellness needs. Please call 1-855-344-3800 to book an appointment.
Island Health acknowledges this is not an ideal situation for the community and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience experienced by this temporary service interruption.