With the move to the 10,000 square-foot, $2 million clinic, Hill said, growth in patient care should lead eventually to 3,500 people being served by quality staff members.
“The Warrensburg clinic has always had outstanding service scores,” he told the crowd, adding there is no reason to wonder why patients like the clinic with such strong staff members. “They’re just outstanding providers and patient advocates.”
Mayor Donna DeFrain said she is glad that the VA decided to expand in Warrensburg.
The outpatient clinic is nearly seven times the size of the original facility.
“Now we’ll be able to accommodate a lot more veterans,” DeFrain said.
The veterans will receive assistance in a modern facility.
With more veterans coming to Warrensburg, she said, the city’s economy also should benefit. Some veterans may stay to conduct business, such as getting a bite to eat or doing some shopping.
Broker and owner of Reece & Nichols/Whiteman Realty, Nancy Kenepp, received recognition from DeFrain for helping bring the clinic to Warrensburg. The VA had called asking her to recommend a location and she provided the location where the new facility now stands.
Paul Schleicher, M.D., took the time to recognize his clinic staff members, asking them to rise, telling about their duties and joining the crowd in applauding their work.
“Everybody in this room is here to take care of a veteran,” he said.
After the remarks, the crowd crossed the street for the ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the clinic’s opening, with nurse practitioner Cindy Heimsoth doing the snipping.
Guests at the reception inside entered the clinic under a canopy and through automatic doors. By light provided in part by energy-efficient windows, they viewed reproductions of vintage photos that brightened the walls and saw a variety of rooms where patients will be seen for services. The clinic offers eye and hearing exams, a clinic counselor, a pharmacist for disease management and tele-medicine.
In one of the exam rooms, health technician Wendy Zeller talked about the teleretinal imaging machine. Within about 24 hours, the machine can provide a review that can determine the presence of retinopathy, a leakage of eye vessels associated often with diabetes. If retinopathy is detected early enough, the problem may be repaired, she said.
DeFrain stood next to one of the historic photos in a waiting area.
“It’s a beautiful building,” she said.