For years, SHORE Centre (Sexual Health, Options, Resources, Education) has been providing sexual and reproductive health services in the community.
During SHORE Centre's last fiscal year, it saw just over 800 clients in the clinic and just under 1,200 visits in total.
"This year between April 1 to September 30 we saw over 700 clients in our clinic and almost 1,100 visits overall, at this point we've almost reached in the first six months of our year the total number of clients and visits from the previous year," said TK Pritchard, Executive Director, SHORE Centre.
One of the reasons for the increase is because the pandemic has forced other service providers to remain closed, or may not be providing services in the same way.
"People who may have gone to a family doctor or other specialist for things like vasectomies or IUD insertions, those procedures have been considered non-essential during this time," Pritchard mentioned.
Another reason for increased clients and visitors is because Region of Waterloo Public Health is not operating its sexual health clinic, and Pritchard said, that makes sense because Public Health has re-directed those resources towards COVID-19 management.
"Those are folks that used to get access to things like birth control through their clinics, so now, those clients are coming to use."