New South Providence clinic aims to treat 100,000 its first year

Services like Urgent Care, Family Medicine and Psychiatry services will be relocated to the new clinic.
An exam room at South Providence Medical Park, 551 E. Southampton Drive in Columbia. The new 85,500-square-foot facility provides services such as urgent care, family medicine and a drive-thru pharmacy for MU Health System patients.

The new South Providence Medical Park clinic hopes to treat around 100,000 patients in its first year of operation, according to a recent projection by MU Health Care.

The 85,512-square foot facility, which opened Jan. 20, will serve a number of patients redirected from other locations as well as a number of new patients, MU Health spokeswoman Stephanie Baehman said in an email.

Convenience is a big focus for the new clinic, said Dr. Steven Zweig, chairman of the Department of Family and Community Medicine. He said the clinic will feature a team of about 100 resident and faculty physicians and an open layout to meet health care demand and to provide increased convenience for patients. MU Health services like Urgent Care, Family Medicine and Psychiatric Center are also being relocated to the new facility.

“It’s different from most clinics in that it is has an open, two-story stairway to encourage people to use the stairs instead of the elevator,” Zweig said. “It is convenient because it provides all sorts of services that a normal facility cannot, things that before were only available at a hospital.”

The clinic’s location on 551 E. Southampton Drive allows public vehicle access from four directions, Zwieg said. The city is also planning a CoMo Connect bus stop near the facility.

New digs

The clinic boasts a new 2,000-square-foot pharmacy with a drive-thru, which will help match patient needs by expanding its weekly hours and adding weekend hours, Manager of Outpatient Pharmacy Julia Chisholm said. Doctors can now send prescriptions electronically to the pharmacy from exam rooms, so that prescriptions are ready to pick up through the drive-thru as patients leave the clinic.

Chisholm said the new pharmacy has already observed a 200 percent increase in over-the-counter sales.

“I am very excited for the improvement in patient care we are able to provide,” she said. “We have quadrupled our amount of space, and the increased space allows for a larger selection of retail over-the-counter items. We opened two weeks ago and our patients seem to be handling the transition well.”

The new clinic has 48 family medicine rooms, 30 pediatric examination rooms, 15 outpatient behavioral health care rooms and two conference rooms for group therapy. The facility also offers ultrasound, MRI, CT, X-ray and mammography scans through its imaging center, and medical testing through an on-site lab.

The increase in number of examination rooms allows room for more training and learning experience for staff and medical students, Zweig said.

“If students have a good place for training and experience, MU can provide a source of doctors who may stay in Missouri and practice,” he said. “In terms of staff, we can give them a healthy working environment and training that they may take with them to new jobs in other locations.”

The clinic will serve a number of patients who are redirected from other MU Health locations, as well as a number of new patients, Baehman said. She said MU Health generated its patient load projection using current productivity numbers and anticipated additions and departures of patients.

Zweig said he hopes the clinic’s focus on convenience of care will help attract new patients.

“The building of the clinic represents a big commitment to the community,” he said. “It shows that MU Health Care is willing to invest the money it takes to create a state-of-the-art facility to take care of you not just today, but for the rest of your life.”

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