Rural Health Clinic Opens at Humboldt General Hospital

Monday, August 22, Humboldt General Hospital’s Rural Health Clinic opened to the public.

The second-floor construction is part of Phase 4 of the hospital’s ongoing building project. The new Rural Health Clinic is actually made up of four clinics including Leonard Perkinson, MD; Jeremy Hurst, FNP-C; Echo Mathews, FNP; and the Family Medicine Residency Clinic. Bradford Granath, MD, will also move into the new area in October.

An all-new Mother Baby Unit is located directly below the Rural Health Clinic on the first floor, while underground parking is located just below street level; clinic patients may access the parking from the Mizpah Street entrance. An elevator allows access to the first or second floors of the new space.

While the new clinic area provides more elbow room for the hospital’s growing slate of providers, HGH Administrative Director of Physician Services Pamela Wickkiser said the Rural Health Clinic is much more than just clinic space.

“This is really meant to allow our entire community to be able to access the medical care they need,” said Wickkiser.

Wickkiser said the new space is part of the federal Rural Health Clinic (RHC) program, which is intended to increase access to primary care services for Medicaid and Medicare patients in rural communities.

RHCs can be public, nonprofit, or for-profit healthcare facilities; however, they must be located in rural, underserved areas.

Dr. Leonard Perkinson who serves as the director of HGH’s Rural Health Clinic said, “Not all physicians are in a position to serve our Medicaid and Medicare patient populations, since reimbursement rates from the government are so low.”

He continued, “But Humboldt General Hospital is in a position to not only fill those needs with the family practice needs of our entire community.”

Dr. Perkinson added, “We are proud to offer this designation to our patients and our community.”

The clustered clinic is different from the clinic spaces at the opposite end of the hospital. Instead of each clinic having separate receptionists and medical assistants, the new clinic includes a central reception area where all patients check in and where appointments with all providers are scheduled.

Dr. Perkinson said all the healthcare providers are capable of viewing patients’ electronic medical records, so whether patients make an appointment with their preferred provider or with the “first available” provider, the clinic will offer continuity of care.

Wickkiser also said the enhanced team environment, with all receptionists and medical assistants working together for the one clinic, will provide a more personalized focus on each patient.

“We are really excited about this new clinic and our ability to serve patients better,” said Wickkiser.

Dr. Perkinson told trustees at the Tuesday, August 23, meeting of the hospital board that the new space is “amazing.”

“This Rural Health Clinic is going to take on a large role in caring for the people of our community,” he said. “We are going to be able to do that much more efficiently.”

Dr. Perkinson said that he and Dr. Granath—who are both Family Practice/OB physicians—are also excited at the prospect of being just one floor up from the new Mother Baby Unit.

“Just one flight down and we’re there to check on moms and deliver babies,” said Dr. Perkinson. “That is going to be very, very nice.”

For more information about Humboldt General Hospital’s Rural Health Clinic, or to make an appointment, please call (775) 623-5222, and choose option 2, or call the phone number for any of the participating clinics.

To access the clinic, please use the new underground parking garage (Mizpah entrance) and take the elevator to the second floor. Alternatively, use the hospital's main entrance and follow the "Rural Health Clinic" signs to the second-floor clinic.

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