The Emergency Department at Cowichan District Hospital is seeing more patients due to a temporary and unforeseen building closure at Valley Medical Clinic.

The hospital is asking patients requiring non-urgent medical care, or prescription refills, to use one of the walk-in clinics nearby.

Those are the Beverly Medical Clinic or the Cowichan Way Clinic.

The walk-in clinics are operated independently of Island Health and each have their own hours of operation.

In all regional hospitals, emergency services are available 24-hours-a-day and a triage system gives priority to emergencies and urgent care requirements.

That means delays for people who do not need urgent care.