One of the newest additions to the fast-growing city in Washington was on display last weekend as the Ridgefield branch of Vancouver Clinic had an official open house July 13.
Citizens got a chance to tour the brand-new facility as music filled the area outside of the clinic proper. The more than 15,000 square-foot facility located on Pioneer Street is the newest addition to the clinic’s growing presence in Clark County, featuring some of the most advanced technology and design aspects for healthcare facilities.
Vancouver Clinic CEO Mark Mantei said that shortly after becoming head of the clinic in 2015, the healthcare provider conducted a growth study which identified places with good potential for a branch — Ridgefield was one of them.
Mantei said one of Ridgefield’s city councilors, Sandra Day, was instrumental in getting awareness that the city could use a Vancouver Clinic.
Day said she was persistent in getting the clinic into Ridgefield, admitting she had pestered Mantei to get the project moving.
“It’s convenient and what people want,” Day remarked about the clinic.
Mantei said that the initial design of the clinic was a mockup made of cardboard in a Camas-area warehouse. He said privacy was a priority with the new clinic, pointing to a design that kept patients secluded to foster comfort in what could potentially be stressful visits.
Mantei said the location will serve as a pilot for the implementation of “Welcome,” a smartphone application that allows patients to check-in through their device. He said it took about 18 months from groundbreaking to the open house, commenting that the project was ahead of schedule and under budget.
“For me, I think this represents bringing primary care close to home,” Mantei said.
The Ridgefield location is slated to start serving the community Aug. 5, though if the turnout for the open house is any indication there’s already plenty of interest among community members.
“This is blowing me away, in terms of the turnout,” Mantei remarked.
Though the clinic is in Ridgefield, Mantei said the location’s proximity to Interstate 5 allowed for those living in La Center and Woodland to benefit as well.
“We really think healthcare needs to be convenient,” Mantei said.
Vancouver Clinic Family Medicine Manager Timothy Tedder said he was part of the team that designed the branch, looking at concepts from across the country to come up with the layout. One of the key benefits he mentioned was mobility, talking specifically about the ability to do blood draws right in the exam rooms so patients didn’t have to move around to get their work done.
“I’m excited, but it is significantly different than the other clinics,” Tedder remarked.
Though Mantei was surprised with the turnout, Ridgefield Mayor Don Stose said he expected to see such a strong response from the community. Stose said that the opening of a Vancouver Clinic was an example of the benefits of growth for the city, mentioning that with its establishment and the imminent opening of a Rosauers grocery store Ridgefield was receiving more amenities that citizens can enjoy.
“They spared no expense. Everything I saw in there was state-of-the-art technology,” Stose remarked.