Wildfires prompt patient relocations in Clearwater

Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital patients and individuals residing in Forest View Place evacuated

Interior Health (IH) announced Saturday evening, July 15, that it is evacuating the majority of its facility in Clearwater due to an evacuation alert issued earlier that day for the community because of wildfire activity.

This evacuation of Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital is for hospital patients, and individuals residing in Forest View Place, a residential care facility located on the site.

The evacuation does not affect other hospital operations at this time – the Emergency Department remains open. Anyone requiring emergency care, should continue to visit the Emergency Department or call 9-1-1.

Acute care patients from Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital are being transferred to Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, while Forest View Place residents are being relocated to care facilities in Kamloops and Salmon Arm.

Community-based services remain in place for individuals who require them. However, IH staff are assessing the health care needs of these clients to determine if any individuals should proactively be relocated at this time.

Interior Health and its staff are committed to ensuring quality care and safety is maintained through the relocation process and in temporary alternate accommodations.

For further information on the wildfire situation, or impacts to health facilities and services, please visit the Interior Health Major Events page on the IH website.

It is standard practice for Interior Health to evacuate its hospitals once an evacuation alert has been declared, and not wait for an evacuation order.