New nursing clinic opens in Dartmouth

Dartmouth clinic space

On November 2, VON opened a new, temporary nursing clinic associated with the Dartmouth General Hospital. VON has been asking the Nova Scotia government for funding to open more clinics. Recently, a vacant space was offered to VON by the hospital at no charge, and we eagerly accepted the opportunity. 

The hospital is also providing some of the equipment required. Although this temporary clinic is not considered fully equipped compared to our other clinics; it does offer an excellent solution at a time when Nova Scotians are having trouble accessing timely care and are experiencing a shortage of healthcare workers. 

In fact, community nursing clinics have the potential to relieve pressures on the rest of the healthcare system in the communities where they are located. We can see 150 per cent more clients at a community nursing clinic than through home visits. As an example of this increased efficiency, when someone visits a clinic needing an IV, a nurse can attend to a second person while the IV is hung. The increased efficiency allows us to help more clients with fewer resources. We have shared this compelling evidence with the Nova Scotia government and we remain hopeful that they will fund additional nursing clinics, including a permanent clinic in Dartmouth. 

According to Statistics Canada, Nova Scotia’s population grew by 5.0 per cent in the last five years, the fastest pace of growth in the province since 1976.  “As folks age there will be fewer people to serve (the senior) population,” says Chantal Davie, Senior Manager of the Halifax clinic. “Opening more nursing clinics is one way to help. VON will always care for patients in their homes, but nursing clinics will enable us to see more people, as many of the people we care for are mobile.”