It’s been seven years since the Internal Medicine Clinic at Village Pointe opened its doors to the public. On that day, Nebraska Medicine internist Joel Armitage, MD, had one patient scheduled for consultation – a patient who carried in three buckets full of empty prescription bottles, ready to be seen. Shelli Gilkerson, who remains at the clinic today, was the only medical assistant employed at the time, and thus held a variety of duties and responsibilities to support the clinic. Gilkerson greeted the patient and showed her to her exam room.
While the first patient took quite a bit of time for the small team to treat, it did not matter as the clinic was slow enough to handle at that time.
“During the first three years, I wasn’t sure it was going to succeed,” Dr. Armitage says. “The clinic had to grow organically and that takes time.”
While it did take years for the clinic to build public awareness and referrals, it has since exploded with growth and opportunity. As the West Omaha community began to take notice of the convenience of the Village Pointe location, a need was recognized to expand and offer additional specialties closer to home for these patients. Thus, the Internal Medicine Clinic is now one of many specialties offered in the 110 building. Michael Feely, MD and Marcus Snow, MD, brought their busy rheumatology practice to the clinic in January 2015 and volume growth began to increase exponentially. The Multispecialty Clinic at Village Pointe now serves patients through a variety of treatments, all under one roof and with easy access. Specialties include allergy and immunology, gastroenterology, internal medicine, nephrology, neurology, psychiatry, rheumatology, travel clinic and urology.
“Patients enjoy not having to travel all the way to midtown if they live in this area,” Gilkerson says. “Having a variety of specialties in one building makes it much more convenient for them and it offers a great patient experience.”
Because the Multispecialty Clinic offers such an array of services to patients, the clinic demands flexibility from its staff members as they adjust to each specialty and learn a variety of skills needed for such crossover.
“The staff is fantastic,” Dr. Armitage says. “They are efficient and very good at what they do. Jared Long has done a great job managing the clinic and adjusting it to change.”
The staff will continue to adapt as there are future plans for the Multispecialty Clinic to expand further. The Olson Center for Women’s Health will be moving to the clinic at a later date, and conversations to integrate other specialties are currently being made. Kara Markin, MD, a new internist, will start at the end of August with a primary focus on women’s health, but men can opt to establish care with her as well.
“It is very cool to see how much we have grown,” says Gilkerson. “We have the capability to continue to grow, and it is neat to see the clinic from the beginning to what it is now. I hold a lot of pride in what is being done here.”