Finding the right care in the right place

Doctor talking to patient

**Please note: Royal Jubilee Hospital (RJH) is upgrading to one, electronic health records system on June 8th.

Patients may experience some delays in our busiest areas of care like the emergency department (ER) while staff get used to using the new system.

If you are not experiencing an emergency, please use the services below to avoid a hospital visit.

Learn more about the transition on our iHealth webpage.


There are services available to help you manage your health and prevent hospital visits

Services include outpatient clinics and health-care services provided by family primary care providers and nurse practitioners, walk-in clinics, urgent and primary care centres and community pharmacists. 

You can also dial 8-1-1 to reach HealthLinkBC 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for health information and advice.

Learn more about the services available to you

Portrait of female doctor with patient

Options for same day care:

Urgent Care Clinics
Same Day Access to Primary Care (including Urgent and Primary Care Centres)
Portrait of community pharmacist with customer

Community Pharmacists:

Your pharmacist may be able to provide an urgent prescription refill or prescribe for 21 minor ailments and contraceptives. Please call your pharmacy to check your pharmacist is able to do this.

Watch to learn about urgent prescription refills
More information
  • If you have run out of your prescription medication and urgently need a refill, speak with your pharmacist
  • They may be able to provide an emergency supply of your medication or provide other useful advice
  • If you have been on the same medication, at the same dosage for 6 months or more, your pharmacist can renew your prescription if it has been prescribed in the last 12 months (with the exception of cancer chemotherapy medications)
  • If you believe you have a minor condition (such as pink eye, headaches and most urinary tract infections) contact or walk into a participating pharmacy and ask a pharmacist for an assessment
  • The pharmacist will review your symptoms and medical history and recommend the best course of action, including a prescription if needed
  • For a full list of included conditions and to book an appointment with a pharmacist visit gov.bc.ca/SeeAPharmacist
Portrait of 8-1-1 call taker

8-1-1

For health advice for non-emergency concerns, call 8-1-1 to speak with a health care navigator 24/7 who will help you find health information and services, or connect you to a registered nurse or pharmacist.

Watch to learn about 8-1-1

 

More information
  • 8-1-1 provides free health advice 24/7
  • When you have a non-emergency health concern or question, call 8-1-1 any time of the day or night
  • A health care navigator will help you find health information and services or connect you with a registered nurse, registered dietician, qualified exercise professional, or pharmacist
Portrait of community health nurse with patient

Community Health Services: 

Community Health Services offer care in your home and in local community clinics. If you are facing challenges living safely at home, we can help with daily tasks, specialized nursing, physical rehabilitation and more, to reduce hospital visits. No doctor referral is needed. For more information, call the Community Access Line for your region.

Call the Community Access Line for your region for information on how to access an Island Health service

South Island: 1-888-533-2273
Open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily

Central Island: 1-877-734-4101
Open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

North Island: 1-866-928-4988
Open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

CHS Poster
CHS Rack Cards

Learn more about Community Health Services
Photo of distressed man sitting on bed

Mental Health and Substance Use Support and Services:

Please call 9-1-1 or go directly to your nearest emergency department if you are experiencing a mental health emergency.

Call Vancouver Island Crisis Line for 24/7 support at 1-888-494-3888

Call Service Link seven days per week for information on mental health, substance use, harm reduction, addition medicine and treatment services at 1-888-885-8824.

Watch to learn more about mental health supports available
More information

If you need help immediately, please call 9-1-1 or go directly to your nearest emergency department

  • For more information or help navigating services for mental health, substance use and harm reduction, call the Mental Health and Substance Use Service Link at 1-888-885-8824
    • This line is answered seven days a week. As this is not an emergency or crisis service, callers who leave a message will be contacted the same or next day.
  • If you need help immediately, crisis lines are open 24/7
    • Vancouver Island Crisis Line is available 24/7 at 1-888-494-3888
    • KUU-US Crisis Line  for Indigenous People is available 24/7 at 1-800-588-8717
Portrait of boy with doctor

GETTING THE RIGHT CARE, AT THE RIGHT PLACE

Watch these videos to learn how our triage system works and hear from local physicians who have advice on where to seek health care, depending on the nature of your illness or health need. 

Right care, right place explained

Watch these videos to hear from local physicians who have advice on where to seek health care, depending on the nature of your illness or health need across the Island Health region.

Cowichan Valley
Nanaimo
Victoria
Visiting the Emergency Department (ER)

If you or someone in your care is experiencing a health crisis or has an urgent medical condition do not hesitate to come to the nearest emergency department or call 9-1-1.

To find examples of urgent medical conditions that require immediate care, please visit the Visiting the Emergency Department (ER) web page.

What's taking so long? Emergency Department wait times explained.

On arrival at the emergency department you will be assessed by a triage nurse and seen by a physician on a priority basis.

Emergency Department wait times explained - Poster
Emergency Department wait times explained - Rack Cards

Health Connect Registry

If you live in B.C. and need a family doctor or nurse practitioner, you can register yourself and your family members for the Health Connect Registry. If you’re already on a waitlist at your local clinic, or if you have a family doctor or nurse practitioner, you do not need to register.

When a provider in your area becomes available, the team in your community will contact you to get matched. They may also contact you for more information.

Portrait of woman checking blood pressure at home

COMMUNITY VIRTUAL CARE

Community Virtual Care is a free program that helps people living with various chronic diseases.

Registered nurses help you to remotely manage your condition from the comfort of your home. All of the tools needed are loaned to you at no cost.

Community Virtual Care programs do not require a primary care provider referral. For more information, call the Community Access Centre for your region:

South Island 1-888-533-2273
Central Island 1-877-734-4101
North Island 1-866-928-4988

Community Virtual Care - poster
Community Health Services - brochure

What is Community Virtual Care?
Chronic kidney disease support

Community Virtual Care offers a free, virtual program tailored to support and educate you to better manage your chronic kidney disease. A Registered Nurse will check in with you regularly, monitor your symptoms, and provide coaching and education so you can improve your ability to manage your condition. The program is approximately 12 weeks long and all equipment is loaned to you at no cost.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) support

Are you struggling with symptoms of COPD? The free Community Virtual Care program is tailored to support and educate you to better manage your disease. A Registered Nurse will check in with you regularly, monitor your symptoms, and, with coaching, you will improve your ability to manage your condition. The program is approximately 12 weeks long and all equipment is loaned to you at no cost.

Diabetes support

Whether you are newly diagnosed or have had diabetes for a long time the Community Virtual Care program offers free, virtual support and education to help you better manage your diabetes. A Registered Nurse will check in with you regularly, monitor your symptoms, and, with coaching, you will improve your ability to manage your condition. The program is approximately 12 weeks long and all equipment is loaned to you at no cost.

Heart failure support

Community Virtual Care offers a free, virtual program tailored to support and educate you to better manage your Heart Failure. A Registered Nurse will check in with you regularly, monitor your symptoms, and, with coaching, you will improve your ability to manage your condition. The program is approximately 12 weeks long and all equipment is loaned to you at no cost.

High blood pressure support

Are you looking for support to better understand and manage your high blood pressure symptoms? Community Virtual Care offers a free, virtual program tailored to support and educate you to better manage your disease. A Registered Nurse will check in with you regularly, monitor your symptoms, and, with coaching, you will improve your ability to manage your condition. The program is approximately 12 weeks long and all equipment is loaned to you at no cost.

Caregiver Support Program

Whether you are new to caregiving or have years of experience, being a caregiver can be challenging and you may feel physical, emotional and mental exhaustion. The Caregiver Support program is for unpaid caregivers and focuses on optimizing your emotional wellbeing and enhancing coping skills in your caregiving role. The program offers three service streams: brief one-to-one counselling, group counselling and a skill-building group. These streams may be offered alone or in combination, based on the caregiver’s goals.

Portrait of doctor palpating near woman's liver

OTHER HEALTH AND CARE SERVICES AVAILABLE ACROSS THE REGION

Royal Jubilee Hospital Liver Care Clinic

The Liver Care Clinic at the Royal Jubilee Hospital is an outpatient clinic that aims to empower patients living with liver disease. Visit the Liver Care Clinic webpage to learn how you can get a referral. 

Yakimovich Wellness Centre

The Yakimovich Wellness Centre (Yakimovich) offers in-person and virtual information sessions for free. These sessions will help you better navigate your health and aging journey.

General Information on Finding the right care in the right place

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