A new family medical clinic began taking patients this week. Located in the Trade Developments 100 Block West building on 100 Avenue, Morinville Family Medical Clinic will see patients Monday through Saturday. The clinic is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Clinic Manager Fatima Haymour said the clinic currently has one full-time physician, Dr. Moutazbellah Raoubi who will be in Morinville Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Additionally, the new clinic starts with another four doctors who will rotate during the evenings. They are Doctors Haroon Imtiaz, Mahmoud Shtewi, Kusai Abuhamed, and Louai Abuhamed. Haymour said the assisting doctors are all general practitioners. A group of specialists from the clinic’s Edmonton location will assist the five doctors.
“Our goal is to learn what the demographic needs are here and bring in our specialists once a month or every two weeks – whatever the need for the community is,” Haymour said, adding the specialists include an internist, dermatologist, dietician, psychologist, and a social worker. The clinic is looking to assist not only with their patients’ physical ailments but the whole package. “It’s the mental health aspects, the relationship aspects. It can be marital, PTSD, depression. We don’t just like to deal with my leg hurts. They [mind and body] link.” The development of the new clinic has been a long time coming. Owned by Alberta Medical Professionals, Haymour said the company has been researching and working on a second location for about two years. Part of the research included assessing the Morinville’s need for evening hours. “The other clinics give as much service as they can, but I know that they are not able to give the later hours or the weekends,” Haymour said. “We’ve come in knowing this community needs it. Let’s do what we can. We’ll be busy in the evenings because we don’t want them to go to emergency. We don’t want them to go to emergency for a sore throat or a cough or ear aches. That sort of thing we can treat here before they go to emergency. We want to take that pressure off of emergency, which means that people that need to see emergency are getting in.”
Another aspect of the new clinic is an adjoining pharmacy, owned by a different company but managed by Haymour. She anticipates opening to serve Morinvillians in about six weeks. “We like to work with a pharmacist as well,” she said, noting the new pharmacy owner is the same as the owner of the one they work with at the Edmonton Clinic. “We work well together. Our doctors love to work with the pharmacists. Sometimes a patient may be more comfortable saying something to a pharmacist than they are their physician or vice versa. It closes that gap of miscommunication or misinformation. The patient gets the best care we can give them and that is important.”
Haymour said when many people think of walk-in clinics they think of medicentres. “The idea of having walk-ins available is so you can see your family doctor or someone in your family’s group,” she explained. “You can make an appointment and get in a little bit faster, but it’s the point to keep all of your medical information in one place, so you are not having to repeat your story and give your history again. You are comfortable. It’s a family medical home – is the term we like to use. We’d rather bring all the specialists here, and you only have to come to one place.” Haymour said they are currently taking new patients and the clinic does not have a cap on the number of patients they can accept. “There’s going to be a limit, but I don’t see that yet,” she said. “I have plans to bring other physicians in.”