A new acute care clinic has opened at the Cayman Islands Hospital for patients with urgent but non-emergency medical conditions.

The unit will offer walk-in appointments from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday and is aimed at patients with everyday illnesses and injuries, including mild sprains, cuts and colds, according to a press release.

The new unit will be situated in the General Practice Clinic at the hospital.

The Health Services Authority previously announced, in 2013, that it had opened an urgent care unit connected to the Accident and Emergency Unit, in an effort to reduce wait times by separating non-emergency patients from more pressing cases.

HSA spokesperson Monique Spence said this was always intended as an interim measure and had not been a practical, long-term option.

“The practicality of this unit within the A&E department was not ideal, but intended at the time as an interim measure to relieve waiting times and overcrowding within the A&E until [a] more suitable setting was identified by the HSA.”

The new clinic is aimed at patients who may not be able to see their primary physician, who do not have a primary physician or who do not need emergency treatment, she said.

HSA CEO Lizzette Yearwood said the clinic would ensure each patient is placed in the right care setting for their needs. “They will no longer need to go to the emergency room for non-life threatening illnesses. This is a crucial development that delivers a better experience for our patients,” she added.

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