DeTar Healthcare System, along with the Texas A&M Health Science Center, recently broke ground on the DeTar Family Medicine Center in Victoria, where physician faculty will train residents and ultimately improve access to health care for community members. The clinic will eventually will be home to 21 physicians, including faculty and residents.

“For decades, the land we are standing on housed education facilities,” said William R. Blanchard, chief executive officer for the DeTar Healthcare System. “DeTar is proud to continue that tradition of learning with the opening of the DeTar Family Medicine Clinic, where physician faculty will guide residents in caring for residents of our community.”

Cliff Thomas, Chair of The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents, added his thanks to both the Texas A&M Health Science Center and De Tar Healthcare System. “I’m a native of Victoria and a member of this community, so I know exactly how important this Family Medicine Center will be. Thank you to everyone at DeTar and the Texas A&M Health Science Center who made this innovative approach possible; it will provide long-term benefits to our region and our state and I could not be prouder of this effort.”

The DeTar Family Medicine Center is part of the DeTar Family Medicine Residency Program, a collaboration DeTar entered into with Texas A&M College of Medicine in 2014. The collaboration will address a critical need for primary care physicians in South Texas and will play a key role in the development of a comprehensive physician workforce solution for the state.

“It is always a proud day when Texas A&M can be part of an endeavor that will change people’s lives for the better,” said John Sharp, Chancellor of The Texas A&M University System. “We are honored to join DeTar Healthcare System in helping to improve access to primary care physicians.”

Patients will begin receiving care at the site when the new DeTar Family Medicine Center opens its doors in early 2016. The center will serve as the medical offices for local family medicine physicians, Sidney Ontai, M.D., M.B.A., DeTar Family Medicine Residency program director and assistant professor at the Texas A&M College of Medicine; Edward Nwanegbo, M.D., M.P.H.; and Mark Stevens, M.D., who are both assistant professors at the Texas A&M College of Medicine.

“Throughout the healthcare industry, you’ll find access to primary care physicians tops the list of concerns for providers and consumers,” said Dr. Ontai. “Recent legislative decisions to open more training programs like the one at DeTar are part of the solution, and the foundation of the DeTar Family Medicine Center improves our ability to attract and retain qualified physicians to our community.”

The new clinic is designed to increase access to care with local providers offering care in the DeTar Family Medicine Center at least six days each week.

“Dr. Nwanegbo, Dr. Stevens and I currently see patients each day in our clinic,” added Dr. Ontai. “One of us is always available on Saturdays. This is how we will train the physicians in our tutelage. As physicians, our duty is to care for patients; we must meet them where they are—and that is not always Monday through Friday from eight to five.”

The 7,500 square foot clinic will have 18 exam rooms where physicians provide comprehensive care for the entire family in all phases of life, from birth through the senior years.

Services include:

  • Care for acute and chronic medical problems
  • Care for expectant mothers
  • Well-baby and well-child visits and immunizations
  • School sports physicals
  • Annual check-ups
  • Family planning

In addition to the faculty and residents, the DeTar Family Medicine Center creates openings for two new clerical and three nursing positions.

 

— Holly Shive

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