Patients of the Keremeos Diagnostic and Treatment Centre might have a difficult time getting an appointment this month.
Dr. Marina Louw, a physician at the centre, told the Review the centre is currently down a doctor-and-a-half.
“Due to unforeseen circumstances there is limited coverage at the centre for the month of November,” she said.
Louw didn’t want to get into details, but said one of the centre’s three doctors is on leave and a full-time replacement has yet to be secured for Dr. Johan Boshoff who left his practice earlier this year.
Boshoff secured some locum coverage before leaving Keremeos. The coverage is in place until the end of January.
Coverage has been arranged for the doctor on leave but not all days were able to be covered off.
“We have less capacity for regular appointments in November. It isn’t that the clinic is closed or that we aren’t here to deal with emergencies, but we’re just asking people that if they can’t get an appointment with us – if they can, they should access a walk-in clinic Penticton,” she said.
Dr. Louw noted there is a significant population of elderly people in the area that cannot make it to walk-ins and encouraged those that could to try their best to do so.
“We do have an older community so we want to be more kind to them. If it’s something minor and someone can access a clinic in Penticton we’re just asking them to do that so the appointments here can be used by people that cannot make it into Penticton.”
She emphasized patients could still call in to book an appointment but hoped they would understand if there weren’t any spots available and make other arrangements.
“We’ve heard rumours that people think we’re closing but we just have less of a capacity for regular visits. We just want to make people aware so they understand when they call in why they might not be able to get an appointment,” she said.
Louw said she expects the doctor on-leave to return in December.
There are several walk-in clinics in Penticton including:
Apple Plaza on Main Street/ Okanagan Ave.
Peach City Medical at Cherry Lane Shopping Centre