KENNEWICK — The doors open Monday on a new Tri-Cities health clinic that plans to ramp up to offer 32,000 appointments a year.
The Miramar Health Center in Kennewick will be the fourth location in the Tri-Cities of the nonprofit Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic and the first to offer a range of health care services under one roof.
Primary care medical, dental, pharmacy, behavioral health, nutrition and outreach services will be based at the building.
“We’re in business to serve the underserved,” said Matt Davy, Miramar Tri-Cities area senior director of regional operations.
The new clinic will help meet the needs of about 36,000 low income residents in the Tri-Cities area who are not being served by a community health center, according to the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic, which is a federally qualified community health center.
Most of its patients are at 200% or below of the federal poverty level.
The new Vista Field clinic at 6351 W. Rio Grande Ave. is expected to serve mostly patients who pay with state Medicaid or who have no insurance, billing on a sliding fee scale.
But it also will take most health care insurance and Medicare and can help people without health care insurance sign up.
The Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic invested $15.5 million on the building constructed on five acres once owned by the Port of Kennewick that it purchased for $1.7 million.
The clinic, which will employ more than 70 people, has space for up to 15 medical providers, in addition to the five providers who will continue to work at Miramar Health Center in Pasco.
By late summer the new clinic is expected to be staffed with seven primary care providers — doctors, physician assistants and nurse practitioners — one dentist, one psychologist, two pharmacists and dietitians.
The Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic also will continue to operate its two pediatric dental clinics in the Tri-Cities, Columbia Basin Pediatric Dentistry and Dentistry for Kids, both in Kennewick.
Evening, weekend clinic hours
The new clinic building is state of the art for a health care facility, Davy said, with 26 exam rooms, two minor procedure rooms, a group exam room and a consult room.
“We think as patients come into the building, they’ll be impressed,” Davy said. “It’s a part of their community that they can be proud of because it looks nice and it’s a pleasant place to come and experience health care.”
Many of the staff, including most receptionists and assistants in medical, dental and pharmacy, speak both English and Spanish.
The clinic will be open for primary care 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays with some Saturday hour. The dental service will be open initially four days a week from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., with a goal of expanding that.
Appointments are required, but the aim is to get patients in as soon as possible, including with some same-day appointments.
To make an appointment call 509-543-9280.
Formed in the 1970s, the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic is the largest community health care provider in the Northwest, operating clinics in Washington and Oregon.
Port of Kennewick commissioners were initially concerned about the sell of land near Vista Field to the nonprofit and how that would fit into their plans to transform the 103-acre former airport into an urban village with residents, commercial spaces, a theater and other amenities.
The port had sold to a private developer in a deal that included a buyback clause, but after discussions commissioners allowed the sale to the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic to be completed.