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Archives: KHI News Service

On January 1, 2017, the KHI News Service became part of KCUR public radio’s new initiative, the Kansas News Service. The Kansas News Service will continue to cover health policy news and broaden its scope to include education and politics. All stories produced by the former KHI News Service are archived here. Stories and photos may be republished at no cost with proper attribution and a link back to KHI.org.

Truman clinic aims to fill health care hole in downtown KC

Lead physician says outpatient facility will help UMKC medical school compete

By Andy Marso | October 28, 2015

Truman clinic aims to fill health care hole in downtown KC
Photo by Andy Marso Leaders of Truman Medical Centers and the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine on Wednesday celebrated the opening of University Health, an outpatient clinic in Kansas City, Mo.

Downtown Kansas City, Mo., has a new outpatient surgical center and the University of Kansas School of Medicine has some local competition as it trains the next generation of KC doctors.

Leaders of Truman Medical Centers and the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine on Wednesday celebrated the opening of University Health, an outpatient clinic on Hospital Hill.

Nelson Sabates, chairman of UMKC’s department of ophthalmology and the new facility’s lead physician, touted the group of doctors, nurses and medical residents at University Health before helping Truman Medical Centers President Charlie Shields cut the ceremonial ribbon.

Photo by Andy Marso Nelson Sabates, chairman of the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s department of ophthalmology, will be lead physician at University Health.

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“We are a very strong academic medical center,” Sabates said. “There’s not just one academic medical center in Kansas City. There’s two, and there has been for many, many years.”

Sabates’ last line was almost drowned out by applause after his veiled reference to the academic medical center on the other side of the state line.

He said the new facility was a passion project for him that was 10 years in the making.

“It had to happen,” Sabates said. “This is the future of health care. This is the future of where we need to be (in order) to be leaders in health care.”

University Health will be home to 50 doctors with an outpatient surgical clinic that Shields said will provide “head-to-toe” procedures: everything from eye surgeries to bunion removal.

It also will offer specialty services like 3-D medical imaging and pain management.

Shields said it’s further evidence of the area’s revitalization.

“This is specialty care right where people live and work, all in absolutely state-of-the-art facilities,” he said.

Shields said the University Health name reflects a commitment by Truman Medical Centers to building community awareness of its partnership with UMKC. Being a teaching hospital for UMKC physicians has advantages, he said.

“They know the latest research, but more importantly they create the latest research, and that is a huge benefit to the patients they see,” he said.

A Sabates Eye Centers office stretches across much of the second floor of the facility.

Sabates said Truman Medical Centers is in his family’s DNA, and this is the beginning of big things for Truman and the UMKC medical school.

“We are going to produce — we are producing — the best doctors that will serve our communities for decades to come,” he said. “That is our legacy here.”