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Michel Boyer mboyer@cjad.com · 7/26/2013

Getting to see a doctor at the last minute isn’t usually easy in Montreal.

The CSSS Cavendish, which operates the CLSC Cote-St-Luc and NDG-Montreal-West, does not have enough doctors.

The walk-in clinic is no longer available to clients who are not patients of doctors at the CLSC.

You can still walk in and see a nurse.

“Doctors are encouraged by the minister, to go and work in private family medicine groups,” Dr. Ronald Ludman with the CSSS Cavendish explained. “We had a few hours some days of available walk-ins and other days none.”

Patients will be able to continue to see doctors at the CLSC, as long as their family physicians work there.

“This change comes at a time, part of the issue has to do with a declining number of doctors available to the CLSC,” Ludman said. “We now have at least five clinics in our territory where people can walk-in without an appointment, and those are the groups we would like to encourage people to go to because those groups do have an increasing number of doctors.”

Some residents feel the change is negative for the community and hopes Minister Réjean Hébert will help reverse the situation.

“It’s abandoning the citizens of Cote-St-Luc and the adjoining communities,” said Jack Hoffman, a resident. “You can’t find a doctor…and many end up just walking into the emergency room.”

The social mandate of the CLSC, according to Hoffman, is to provide local residents access to doctors.

“That’s the whole purpose of it.”

Ludman admitted they want to keep the walk-in clinic open to the general public, but they simply don’t have the doctors available to do so.