Rural hospitals and urgent care facilities are moving to appointment-only lab work for outpatients starting Monday, May 4, to control traffic in and out of healthcare facilities.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) is implementing this temporary change in an effort to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in these facilities, and to ensure laboratory resources remain available for people who need them most.

The change will not affect lab work for hospital inpatients, and all patients requiring laboratory tests will continue to receive them.

AHS is limiting outpatient activity at acute care and urgent care facilities as part of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, many rural AHS facilities offer the only laboratory services in the community. Some waiting areas in these rural lab collection sites are small and not appropriate for maintaining appropriate physical distancing. Appointment-only lab work will improve safety for rural patients at high risk for severe illness, such as those with compromised immune systems.

Patients are encouraged to discuss the urgency of their lab work with their physician before booking appointments.

Appointments can be made by providers or patients by phone or online.

Please find below a full list of rural sites moving to appointment-only lab work, as well as telephone and online appointment booking options.

AHS and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alberta Precision Laboratories, are informing physicians and other ordering providers about these service changes.

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

* Book by phone: 1.833.572.0577  Book online: https://aplappointments.ca/

In the south: Bassano Health Centre; Bow Island Health Centre; Cardston Health Centre; Castor Our Lady of the Rosary Hospital; Coaldale Health Centre; Consort Hospital and Care Centre; Coronation Hospital and Care Centre; Crowsnest Pass Health Centre; Drumheller Health Centre; Fort Macleod Health Centre; Hanna Health Centre; Milk River Health Centre; Oyen - Big Country Hospital; Picture Butte - Piyami Health Centre; Pincher Creek Health Centre; Raymond Health Centre; Taber Health Centre

* Book by phone: 1.877.868.6848  Book online: http://www.calgarylabservices.com/

Claresholm General Hospital; High River Hospital; Vulcan Health Centre

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