After months of construction, the new Litchfield Urgent Care clinic is expected to open its doors to patients later this fall.
"We've been working on this for about a year," said owner Dr. Paul Toofan. "Litchfield kind of fit what we were looking for."
Dr. Toofan, who already owns urgent care clinics in Taylorville and Effingham, said they looked at communities across central Illinois where patients have limited access to health care outside emergency room services and local doctors.
"I've worked in emergency rooms for ten years," said Dr. Toofan. "And I ran across many cases of patients that didn't need to be in the ER. But they had no other choice. I saw the need, and thought patients could be served in a different environment."
Dr. Toofan added that while urgent care clinics were originally started in bigger cities, they often fill a bigger need in smaller communities.
He said the Litchfield Urgent Care clinic will be run by him, with two full-time providers seeing patients. It will feature six exam rooms, as well as a procedure room, where they will be able to repair lacerations, set broken bones and provide IV fluids. Dr. Toofan added they will also have on-site x-ray services, which can be read there or sent off for a reading.
"This is not a replacement for a primary care doctor," he said. "But it's the place to go if something unexpected comes up. This is the place to go if you get sick after hours, get injured or just need care and you can't get in to see your doctor. We can take care of just about anything."
Those patients with more significant medical issues, such as chest pains, stroke or severe illness should still make their first stop the emergency room.
Dr. Toofan said the clinic will be able to draw labs, in partnership with HSHS St. Francis Hospital in Litchfield, provide DOT, as well as school and sports physicals, dispense common prescription medications and provide testing on-site for flu, strep throat, pregnancy and more.
When the clinic opens, it will be able to accept most major health insurance carriers.
Those include Medicare, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Health Link and Aetna, but will not yet be able to accept Medicaid. He hopes that by early in 2019, they will also be able to accept Medicaid.
In addition, patients will be able to visit the clinic's website at centralillinoisurgentcare.com and book appointments online for added convenience.
The clinic will be staffed Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. They will also be open most holidays, with the exception of Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
"We're really excited to be here in Litchfield and provide quality patient care," said Dr. Toofan.