The Wayne County Health Department is consolidating three of its clinics into what will be called the Women’s Health Services Clinic and is seeking feedback from the public about the operational changes.
By combining family planning services, prenatal care and the Breast and Cervical Cancer Control Program, officials say the department will better serve its clientele.
“It’s not going to change anything as far as the services they receive,” said Wanda Westbrook, director of nursing. “We’re just going to be doing those services on the first floor — BCCCP is on the third floor now — so they’ll get the same services they have always received.”
The nurses in each of the affected programs will work more as a team, Westbrook said, and during the implementation process will be cross trained as needed.
The decision was prompted by the desire to improve services, she added.
“I think the reason is to better serve the clients first, and it’s also to better utilize the staff that we already have and make our clinics more efficient,” she said.
Right now the effort is in the planning stages, Westbrook said, with the goal of having it completed by the end of the year.
Clinic hours will remain the same — Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. until 6 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Like many medical offices, Westbrook said the No. 1 complaint received about the clinics is wait time. That seems to be universal, she noted, but is still a concern as patients have to wait to be seen by a health care professional.
“Some days are better than others, but see, we don’t turn people away, either,” she said. “If they walk in, if we can see them, we will.
“They may have to wait a little longer if they walk in, because we have to see those with appointments. But I think for most people that go to a doctor’s office, the No. 1 complaint is wait time. I don’t really think we’re any different than anybody else.”
Dr. James Stackhouse, medical director at the Health Department, also praised the pending merger of the clinics to the first floor.
“I think it will be wonderful, certainly easier to keep people together, less walking around for clients, and will be more organized,” he said Wednesday.
The public can also participate in the process, which is designed to improve how care is provided and offer better accessibility, Westbrook said.
“Any thoughts that they (the public) may have would help with the transformation doing this,” she said.
Comments about the department and its service should be submitted by one of three ways: email to WCHD.Feedback@waynegov.com, the Facebook page for Wayne County Health Department or mailed to Wayne County Health Department, ATTN: Clinic Consolidation, 310 N. Herman Street, Box CC, Goldsboro, NC 27530.