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Owners say clinic is not competing with ARH, MCHC




Whitesburg Walmart Manager Earline Delph (center) presented Letcher County Sheriff Danny Webb (left) and Deputy Eugene Slone with a check for $1,000 to benefit the Operation LifeSaver program, which is aimed at helping locate people diagnosed with dementia and other disorders if they ever wander from home. Delph presented several checks to local organizations as a part of the re-grand opening celebration on Nov. 5.

Whitesburg Walmart Manager Earline Delph (center) presented Letcher County Sheriff Danny Webb (left) and Deputy Eugene Slone with a check for $1,000 to benefit the Operation LifeSaver program, which is aimed at helping locate people diagnosed with dementia and other disorders if they ever wander from home. Delph presented several checks to local organizations as a part of the re-grand opening celebration on Nov. 5.

A new clinic belonging to Pikeville Medical Center located inside the Whitesburg Walmart is ready to provide basic health care services.

“It’s the perfect place to be,” said Thelma Vinson, vice president of development and Walmart clinics for Pikeville Medical Center. “It’s very convenient to the patient. They can go to the clinic. Pick up their medicines. Get their soup and Kleenex and go home.”

Linda Tucker, advanced registered nurse practitioner, will diagnose, treat and prescribe non-narcotic medications at the clinic. Tucker, of Indiana, has been employed by Pikeville Medical Center for more than a year. Two clinic clerks from Letcher County will be working at the clinic. Another advanced registered nurse practitioner is needed.

Acute respiratory illnesses, upset stomachs, coughs, allergic conditions and sprains are some of the conditions which can be treated at the clinic. Also off ered are ear wax removal, wart removal and minor cut close. Sports physicals, drug screenings and pregnancy screenings can be done at the clinic.

Patients can also benefi t from tobacco cessation, obesity counseling and diabetes screening.

Vaccinations administered at the clinic include flu, tetanus, pneumonia and MMR (measles, mumps and rubella).

Some testing can be done in a lab area. All patient information will be electronically recorded.

“Basically, our main goal is keeping people out of the ER that don’t need to be there,” said Vinson. “We’re a lot cheaper than the ER.”

She said the goal is to get patients feeling better faster.

Vinson said a price chart shows people all of the services provided at the clinic at what the lowest rate would be for people without insurance. Most of the services range between $25 and $77.

No appointments are necessary. Clinic hours are 12 p.m. until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday. Hours will soon be extended.

Juanita Deskins, chief operating officer of Pikeville Medical Center, said the corporation does not have intentions of replacing any existing health care facilities.

“We admire and work closely with Mike Caudill and MCHC,” said Deskins. “ARH hospital is a good hospital. We are a regional referral center. Any services not provided in the Whitesburg area, we can provide those services.”

Deskins said at a ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony on Nov. 5 that she is excited and pleased to expand Pikeville Medical Center’s offices in Letcher County.

“We already feel like we are part of the Letcher County area,” she said.

Pikeville Medical Center opened its first Walmart clinic in Pikeville in June. Vinson said 785 patients were seen in October. Another Walmart clinic will open in Norton in the coming weeks.

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