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Island Health re-locates and expands its Nanaimo heart health clinic

Clinic moves from NRGH to nearby site at Dufferin Crescent
Island Health’s Nanaimo Heart Function Clinic has moved from Nanaimo Regional General Hospital to a nearby site at Dufferin Crescent. (News Bulletin file photo)

Island Health is better equipped to help people with heart issues thanks to a more expansive heart function clinic in Nanaimo, the health authority announced.

In a press release, Island Health noted that the facility has moved from Nanaimo Regional General Hospital to a larger site close by on Dufferin Crescent. Three additional exam rooms will help provide “greater patient privacy [and] better patient flow,” and will create opportunity for medical staff to provide care for more patients at the same time. The new clinic opened Monday, Dec. 5.

The number of patients accessing the clinic annually has nearly doubled in the last two years and so the space was needed, said Sarah Currie, lead heart function nurse clinician, in the press release.

“We would like to help more people manage their heart failure, so moving to a larger space with more exam rooms and a space for educational workshops will be really beneficial,” she said.

Dr. Hesam Keshmiri, NRGH lead cardiologist and clinic director, spoke of the importance of heart health, something the new site will assist people with achieving.

“Each year, almost 4,000 patients in Island Health are diagnosed with heart failure,” said Keshmiri in the press release. “By diagnosing and managing their symptoms as outpatients from the clinic, we are reducing heart failure-related hospitalizations and lessening the burden on the health-care system.”

Island Health noted that the new site has a meeting room, and it plans to “provide patients with educational clinics about self-management, lifestyle, nutrition, medications and exercise in the context of heart failure care.”

Damian Lange, NRGH interim executive director of clinical operations, said in the press release that expanding heart health services on the mid-Island is of utmost importance, as cardiac disease is a stressor on the region’s population.

“This expansion will include adding in further clinical resources, recruiting cardiologists, as well as providing dedicated leadership resources to ensure the program continues to meet current and future demands,” he said.

A referral from a primary care provider or specialist must be obtained before people can access the clinic, Island Health said.

The clinic is located at 1621 Dufferin Cres.

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