The Mattawa Medical Clinic officially opened its doors today.
Located on the lower level of the Mattawa Hospital, the Mattawa Medical Clinic currently has four listed physicians; Doctors, Mark Wilkins, Len Gushe, Raj Vohra and Clint Redhead.
“We have office space for up to five doctors,” said Dr. Mark Wilkins, “and treatment space for several patients at any time.”
The co-location of the Mattawa Medical Clinic on the hospital campus at 217 Turcotte Park Road in Mattawa was several years in
Mattawa Hospital President and CEO Guy Chartrand said, “This was a multi year project. It required the efforts of the doctors, the
hospital board and staff and the community.”
The hospital owns the space occupied by the clinic and was responsible for the redevelopment of the space from file and equipment storage to modern, state of the art, suite of doctor’s offices and examination rooms.
“This clinic will allow physicians to focus on patients. Except for clinic staff, the hospital provides all necessary supports from I.T. to cleaning to administrative services,” said Chartrand.
The doctors are tenants and the hospital is their landlord. This arrangement means the Mattawa physicians are on site and can
easily attend to inpatient and outpatient needs. Prior to the opening of the clinic the physicians maintained separate offices in the
community and would travel to and from the hospital as needed.
“Dr. Gushe and I had offices in a house that was about two or three kilometers from the hospital, the distance added an extra ten
minutes or so each way when we were needed at the hospital,” said Wilkins. “This arrangement makes it a lot easier in terms of our availability to the hospital and to our practices.”
Patient care was a paramount reason for building the Mattawa Medical Clinic within the Mattawa Hospital.
Patients can visit their physician in the clinic and walk straight into the hospital for lab work, x-ray and other diagnostic services.
Likewise, doctors can easily transition from the clinic to the hospital to see emergency or admitted patients.
As tenants of the hospital, doctor’s no longer need to concern themselves with facility management and equipment requirements.
The rigors of day to day administrative duties as they relate to an office are no longer a concern. This means doctors can focus on meeting the health care needs of patients.
What will this mean for physician retention and recruitment?
“Young physicians are looking for a clean, modern, convenient setting they can work in and this is just that,” said Dr. Len Gushe.
“They are going to be able to walk in here and have staff and equipment in place as opposed to having to build an office.”
Like many small and rural centers across Ontario, attracting new medical staff is a top of mind pursuit.
Aging and declining populations can make physician recruitment difficult so providing a turn key office solution with staff in place, and colleagues on site, co-located with the local hospital will be a great incentive.
The Mattawa hospital continues to grow and evolve to meet the health care needs of the communities it serves.
A partnership between the Mattawa Hospital and the Algonquin Nursing Home means plans are in the works for the relocation of the long term care residence to the hospital campus as well.
“We are planning for the future,” said Chatrand.
“One site catering to every health care requirement from birth to end of life and everything in between. Making it convenient for our staff, our doctors and most of all our citizens is what it is all about and the Mattawa Medical Clinic is a big part of our plan. We are glad it is here.”