FORT SILL, OK (TNN) - Reynolds Army Health Center is once again the home of an urgent care health clinic.
Officials expect it will be a huge deal for soldiers and trainees on post, offering them a quicker, easier option when dealing with injuries or illness. Reynolds used to have a fully functioning emergency room several years ago, which ultimately went away. But officials say they are thrilled to be bringing back some key services.
Colonel Rick Ortiz said plans to start the urgent care center have been in the works for years.
"Over two years of analytical work and assessments, we learned that we were having an unacceptable amount of loss of leader time and training time because soldiers were having to go off post for emergency care and after-hours care. So, we made the decision to establish this urgent care clinic here,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz said the clinic will operate similarly to the one in downtown Lawton.
"Medical problems that are minor in nature, headaches, coughs, flu, small lacerations, small fractures, strains, sprains. What I think it’s important to know is we won’t do ER level work here, strokes, life, limb or eye site or even snake bites. For that stuff, folks will need to go down town,” Ortiz said.
The clinic will be available for all TRICARE beneficiaries and will be open from 4 p.m. until 11 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on weekends. Command Sergeant Major Dina Pang said when planning to open the clinic, they wanted to ensure they stayed open after hours.
"It really alleviates some of our access to care issues and sometimes with acute and urgent care issues, people want to be seen immediately and might not be able to get a same day appointment. This allows them to come at 4 o’clock and get seen by a provider on a walk-in basis versus making an appointment,” Pang said.
Barbara Schira said in addition to soldiers and trainees, the clinic will be extremely beneficial to their families.
"There are many family members that have issues, especially after work. Children are ill, they need a place to be seen, they may have ear infections, they may have strep throat, they may have not had time to bring them in earlier, but they can bring them here confidently to be assessed and treated,” Schira said.
The clinic is already up and running and is available to all TRICARE beneficiaries but preference will be shown to uniformed military members, meaning they will be seen first.