Okinawa facility to combine three family medicine clinics
June 20, 2005
CAMP LESTER, Okinawa — The ribbon was cut last week, but doors won’t officially open for business at U.S. Naval Hospital Okinawa’s new clinic until June 27.
The Lester Family Medicine Clinic, in building 6021 behind the hospital, is an 11-appointment-room facility that will replace three family practice clinics on the island.
The current Lester clinic will move out of the pediatric department, and family practice operations will end at the branch clinics on Marine Corps Air Station Futenma and Camp Foster. Patients will be enrolled at the new facility, said Cmdr. Elizabeth Beazley, head of the hospital’s primary-care services.
“By expanding the Lester Family Medicine clinic, we are able to provide our patients with the quality care they deserve in a more efficient manner,” she said.
The hospital’s family clinic patients will be the first to move, receiving care from the new clinic beginning June 27, Beazley said. Futenma clinic patients will follow on July 11, and Foster patients will wrap up the transition on July 25.
Beazley said active-duty servicemembers stationed at Futenma and Foster still will receive treatment at the outlying clinics.
Hospital staff say that while some families may have to travel a little farther to receive care, the new clinic will give them better access to providers.
Beazley said other hospital services, such as the pharmacy, labs and X-ray clinic, are near the Lester Family Medicine Clinic and are available at all times, and specialty care is at their fingertips.
“This clinic has been designed and staffed to maximize appointment availability for our enrollees,” said Cmdr. Thomas Petrilak, hospital director for administration.
The clinic will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, and 8 a.m. to noon on holidays. It will be closed on Sundays.
“The clinic staff will closely monitor demand patterns and adjust the hours of operation to best meet the needs of our enrollees,” Petrilak said.
For more details on the new clinic, call DSN 643-7517.