Aurora to open expanded Port clinic next week

Addition that has more than doubled size of facility includes what will be the city’s only pharmacy
Ozaukee Press staff

Aurora Health Care will open its expanded Port Washington clinic on Monday, but it’s not ready to consolidate the services offered at its two clinics in the city quite yet.

Instead, existing services offered at the clinic, 1475 W. Grand Ave., will move into the new portion of the building, along with a pharmacy and the ophthalmology and optical services departments.

Then Aurora will undertake a renovation of the older portion of the roughly 20-year-old building. It will upgrade and update its imaging equipment, enhance the lab services and give a facelift to the examination rooms.

On April 3, the health care provider will consolidate the remaining services currently offered at its west clinic in the renovated east clinic building.

“It’s a phased-in approach,” said Delores Parsons, Aurora’s senior director  of clinic operations for the Greater Milwaukee North Market. “It makes sense for us, and we’re doing it in a deliberate and thoughtful way.”

To that end, she said, Aurora has more than doubled the space in the clinic, which will not only accommodate current services at the two Port clinics — plus the pharmacy and a larger rehabilitation facility — but also allow room for future expansion.

“This is an investment in the community,” Parsons said. “We’ve been a major health care provider in the community for 30 years as Aurora and its predecessor organizations. We never had any intention of not providing care in Port Washington.

“We just want to make sure we meet everyone’s current needs and look ahead.”

The expanded clinic represents an investment of “well over $1 million,” Parsons said, one that’s been in the construction process since June.

It’s addition of a pharmacy couldn’t come at a better time for the city, since the only other pharmacy in Port ceased business on Tuesday.

But Aurora has been planning this clinic for more than a year, and the decision to add a pharmacy was done as the health care provider looked at what patients need, Parsons said.

The pharmacy will allow for a greater dialog between pharmacists and physicians, who use the same electronic records system, and add convenience for patients who won’t have to stop at a second building to get their medication when leaving an appointment, Parsons said.

Although the pharmacy will only be open during business hours on weekdays, expanded hours are possible in the future, she said.

And, she noted, Aurora offers an automatic refill and mail-order delivery program at no charge.   

Consolidating services from its east and west clinics in one location is a natural move for Aurora, which has for years operated facilities just blocks from each other after it acquired Advanced Health Care, which had owned the west clinic.

The east clinic site was selected for the consolidated facility because it’s “the ideal location,” Parsons said. “It’s got easy access and good visibility.”

It will allow Aurora to be more efficient and eliminate duplicated services such as X-ray and lab services that are currently offered at both clinics, Parsons said.

It will also help eliminate confusion for patients who aren’t always sure which building they should visit for their appointments.

But until the two clinics are consolidated in April, as the new imaging department is created at the east clinic, all patients requiring this service will need to go to the west clinic for that.

“Our patients will be inconvenienced a bit,” Parsons said, but it will be temporary.

Just as the Aurora staff will be busy this weekend moving departments in the east clinic so work can start on the older portion of the building, when April rolls around the move from the west to east buildings will take place over a weekend, Parsons said.

Then, she said, Aurora will refurbish the west clinic to house behavioral health services currently offered at a number of Ozaukee County locations.

“This will allow those services to grow,” Parsons said, noting they are limited by building constraints currently.

Parsons said Aurora is excited about the move.

“It’s been a long anticipated project,” she said. “We’ll be very proud to show off our building.”

An open house to show off the clinic will be scheduled for later in spring, she said.


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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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