A physician's stethoscope is shown in this file photo.

A new health centre has opened its doors to serve Regina residents.

The Al Ritchie Heritage Community Health Centre is one of four new health centres that opened as part of Connected Care, a program meant to enhance access to home and primary health care.

“Located adjacent to the Regina General Hospital at 1550-14th Avenue, the centre brings together services from the former Al Ritchie Health Action Centre, midwifery and Kids First Program,” the province said in a news release. “In addition, services have been expanded to include nurse practitioner services, chronic disease management and immunization services.”

The province said the program is meant to reduce wait times in emergency departments.

“The COVID-19 pandemic created a dramatic shift in how the Centre provides services but we’ve been able to continue offering our programs virtually, via door stop drop offs and in person,” Saskatchewan Health Authority Central Health Network Director Laveena Tratch said. “We’ve been using social media to provide healthy living strategies and making telephone contacts with isolated clients to ensure their needs are met. Elder and Knowledge Keeper support has also been available on request.”

A portion of funds from the federal government from the Canada-Saskatchewan Home and Community Care and Mental Health and Addiction Services Funding Agreement is being allocated to the centre.