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Clinic completes renovations
new kl heart
Mary Miles, chief executive officer of the Heart of Kansas Family Health Care Inc., introduced staff and held a ribbon cutting Thursday evening with a representative from Jerry Morans office, Mike Zamrzla, and representatives of the USDA Rural Development State Office. They celebrated the completion of the clinic expansion project. - photo by KAREN LA PIERRE

The Heart of Kansas Family Health Care Inc. employees celebrated the completion of the clinic expansion project on Thursday at a Great Bend Chamber of Commerce After Hours. The building is now 12,000 square feet, doubling its size, and eight exam rooms have been added for a total of 17.

The improvements began last October. According to Mary Miles, chief executive officer, the clinic received stimulus funding and a USDA Rural Development Loan for a combined amount of approximately $890,000.

Miles was very pleased with the project. "It is our responsibility to take good care of people," she said. "People deserve health care.

"We like what we do," she said. We’re happy to be here."

The clinic offers reduced rate health care based upon income and serves both insured and uninsured. A doctor will be added to the staff Sept. 1. Individuals visiting the clinic can provide proof of income to receive discounted services even if they have insurance with a large deductible.

Miles encouraged anyone to come for services. The waiting time for appointments is not long and they are open until 7 p.m. on Thursday, she said. They also see dental patients.

The clinic has continued to see patients throughout the renovation. They will also be adding staff with the addition of a physician.

"It’s a perfect use of funds," said Patty Clark, USDA Rural Development.

Rural Development Loans are offered to areas with a population below 20,000. The funds are used for construction and rehabilitation of buildings, energy efficiency improvements, purchase of renewable energy systems, acquisition of land, equipment purchases and payment of legal, architectural and engineering fees.