Interior Health has announced that Merritt’s emergency room will once again be temporarily closed, with the diversion closing the ER for 13 hours from 7 p.m. Wednesday (July 12) to 8 a.m. Thursday (July 13).

IHA said in a press release, which was released after the closure already had begun, that the diversion in service is due to limited nursing availability.

While inpatient services will continue at the hospital during this time, emergency services will be unavailable, and the health authority says patients can access care at Kamloops’ Royal Inland Hospital.

They added that those in need of life-threatening emergency care, such as chest pains, difficulty breathing, and severe bleeding, should always call 9-1-1 for transport to the nearest available facility.

Those unsure whether or not a trip to the ER is warranted should call 8-1-1 to speak with HealthLinkBC for non-emergency health information.