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B.C.’s first health centre catering to francophones to open in the fall

More than 80,000 provincial residents named French as their mother tongue as of 2021
Minister of Health Adrian Dix speaks during a news conference to announce Canada’s first self-screening cervical cancer plan, with at-home tests in Vancouver, B.C., on January 9, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ethan Cairns

A new health centre dedicated to serving British Columbia’s French-language speakers will open its doors this fall in Vancouver.

A statement from B.C.’s Ministry of Health says the current Vancouver Urban Health Centre cannot accommodate the needs of the Lower Mainland’s growing French-speaking community even though it offers primary care in both French and English.

It says the new centre, expected to open in October in Vancouver, will be equipped with a care team of family doctors, nurses and social workers.

The government hopes to connect 4,400 people to primary care by 2029.

Provincial Health Minister Adrian Dix says the demand for patient-centred care is growing as the province welcomes more newcomers from French-speaking countries and beyond.

Data provided by the province shows 6.6 per cent of B.C.’s population, or more than 328,000 people, can speak French. More than 80,000 provincial residents named French as their mother tongue as of 2021, with more than half that population living in the Lower Mainland.

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The Canadian Press