By Paul Thompson
Getting sick is always bad news, but there is now a silver lining in Southern Kansas City. That’s because the City of Kansas City—partnering with Swope Health Services and the Local Investment Commission (LINC)—has officially announced the site for a new health clinic in the Southland.
On Wednesday, March 31, officials revealed that the new Swope Health South Clinic will be located at 8821 Troost Avenue. The health clinic will be the first located south of 75th street in KCMO.
The site was chosen from a group of 33 other locations by a special panel convened to find the area most in need by South Kansas City residents.
“The emergency room and ambulance have been their primary care physician,” Councilman John Sharp said.
That won’t be the case for much longer. The health clinic will begin remodeling in the next few weeks and still plans to open up to the public sometime this summer. The clinic will offer primary care physicians for adults as well as children, and will also provide preventative care, chronic disease management, and other specialized services.
Swope Health South Clinic anticipates a large swell of patients upon opening and is implementing an electronic medical records system to make the transition as smooth as possible. The clinic will serve the insured and uninsured alike, and will receive federal funding to help cover the cost of operations.
Councilwoman Cathy Jolly praised the coming facility, and alluded to more possible health clinics coming soon.
“It is very gratifying to take this step towards opening that clinic,” she said, “and to know that because of the passing of the health care reform bill, more funding for clinics of this type will be made available.”
Expounding on the likelihood of further clinics, director of the KCMO Health Department Dr. Rex Arthur acknowledged that preliminary plans for another South Kansas City health clinic were already underway.
Until then, officials behind the project are confident that they have chosen the correct spot for the first Southland clinic.
“It was very clear that there was nowhere in the metropolitan area that had more need than this area,” said Rob Gierer, the chief operating officer of the Local Investment Commission (LINC).