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Virtual care might be a good option for health advice during holidays, Fraser Health says

Virtual care operates 7 days a week from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
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Anyone in Fraser Health can access virtual care 7 days a week from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Fraserhealth.com)

As doctors reduce their hours over the holiday season, Fraser Health wants to remind people they have another option for health advice – virtual care.

Anyone can connect via phone, video or web chat with a registered nurse (RN) seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Nurses can access medical records, offer health advice and make referrals to Fraser Health services and programs. They can also examine symptoms over video conference.

“For example, if you have a rash, they could have a look on webchat and provide guidance on how to treat it,” an email to the Now-Leader from Fraser Health states.

To access virtual care call 1-800-314-0999 or visit Fraser Health’s website here to speak to an RN.

Fraser Health recommends calling 811 outside of their hours. The main difference between 811 and Fraser Health’s virtual care is that 811 operates 24/7 and is run by the province.

Virtual care was launched in 2020 during the pandemic, but Fraser Health says the program is here to stay. Since its start, there has been more than 136,000 virtual care visits.

It can sometimes be hard to know when to access virtual care, go to urgent care or when to go to the ER. If it is a critical or life-threatening condition, visit your closest emergency room or call 911.

If it is not a medical emergency, Dr. Craig Murray, regional medical director of emergency medicine for Fraser Health, recommends calling your family doctor or if they are unavailable going to an urgent care centre.

Surrey has two urgent and primary care centres – one in Newton (6830 King George Blvd) and the other in Whalley (Unit G2 9639 137A Street).

Fraser Health has also created a handy tool for parents to help them decide when to take their children to the ER.



anna.burns@surreynowleader.com

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Anna Burns

About the Author: Anna Burns

I started with Black Press Media in the fall of 2022 as a multimedia journalist after finishing my practicum at the Surrey Now-Leader.
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