News

3.06.2012

Healthy ’Canes Employee Clinic Opens on Coral Gables Campus

Just as advertised, the doors to the University of Miami’s newest employee walk-in clinic opened at 7:30 a.m. sharp on February 27. Inside, nurse practitioner Lainey Tobin, a graduate of UM’s Master of Science Nursing Program, started a busy day of work, preparing the examination rooms and then treating the clinic’s first patients—all before noon.

“Colds, coughs, minor burns, and examinations of skin conditions,” said Tobin, describing some of the medical services offered at the Coral Gables campus-based Healthy ’Canes Employee Clinics. “This helps give our faculty and staff convenient access to quality UHealth care.”

Located in the first floor of the McKnight building across the street from the UM baseball stadium on Ponce de Leon Boulevard and staffed by Tobin, the clinic is UM’s second walk-in urgent care site; the first, which opened at the Miller School of Medicine last April, is located in the Professional Arts Center, 1150 N.W. 14th Street, Room 708.

The clinic, a collaboration of the Miller School of Medicine, Division of Human Resources, and School of Nursing and Health Studies, is part of UHealth – University of Miami Health System, giving employees access to top quality physicians and facilities.

“This is just what the doctor ordered,” UM President Donna E. Shalala said at the clinic’s grand opening ceremony, held February 27 with administrators and dozens of employees in attendance. “We wanted to bring health care closer to home, so we have to make it convenient.”

For a $10 flat fee, faculty and staff, regardless of whether they are enrolled in the UM/Aetna health plan, can be treated for common illnesses and minor injuries, and receive examinations for skin conditions such as rashes or infections. Some immunizations, such as flu shots and the shingles vaccine for persons over 60, are available.

“These walk-in clinics make it easy for employees to get the care they need, when they need it,” said Jennifer Cohen, executive director of UM’s Benefits division.

“The whole concept is to make acute primary care accessible to our faculty and staff,” said Robert Schwartz, professor and chair of the Miller School’s Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, who supervises both employee walk-in clinics. “Many times people don’t want to go to a Walgreens or a CVS. We’re offering the added benefit of being part of a University health system with physicians who, on a regular basis, will review the care given at our clinics. It’s meant to amplify services UHealth is offering.” He described the clinics as offering “continuity of care” and “easy access.”

Advanced registered nurse practitioners like Tobin and Mara Garcia, who is also an alumna of UM’s nursing school and staffs the Miller School Healthy ’Canes Employee Clinic, are, in part, helping to address the shortage of primary care physicians in Florida, providing some basic health care services that would normally be rendered by physicians, said JoAnn Trybulski, associate dean of the UM nursing school’s DNP program. Trybulski said the new clinics could perhaps serve as teaching sites for nurse practitioner students.

Curious about the types of services offered at UM’s newest employee walk-in clinic, Tommy Warren made the short walk from her office in the UM Police Department to check out the new facility, peering into its exam rooms and asking questions of Tobin. She learned that the sinus infection from which she suffered about a week ago could have been treated at the clinic.

“I’m glad it’s here,” Warren said. “Now I know I have accessibility to health care that’s close.”

The clinics are open Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. For more information, call 305-284-WELL (Coral Gables campus clinic), 305-243-8886 (Miller School clinic), or visit www.HealthyCanesClinic.com.

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