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April 19, 2017

Marshall medical clinic closes after nine months

In partnership with U.Va. Health, Novant continues to operate an “Express Care” clinic in Warrenton’s Northrock Shopping Center.
This difficult decision was reached after it was demonstrated this level of care was not required by the community, given the low volume of patients that utilized this facility.
— Susan Tulino, Novant spokeswoman
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
Lacking patients, Novant Health’s urgent care center in Marshall shut less than a year after it opened.

Occupying a small storefront in the shopping center on Winchester Road, the “Express Care” office closed April 1. It began taking patients last June 15.

“This difficult decision was reached after it was demonstrated this level of care was not required by the community, given the low volume of patients that utilized this facility,” Novant spokeswoman Susan Tulino said in an email. “This step will allow us to better meet the healthcare needs of this community in the future. Our goal remains to serve our communities with locations and healthcare services that are needed and utilized.”

Novant policy prohibits her from disclosing patient volume information, Ms. Tulino said.

In partnership with the U.Va. Health System, Novant continues to operate an urgent care office in Warrenton’s North Rock Shopping Center. The same partnership opened the Marshall clinic.

Fauquier Health CEO Chad Melton said he learned of Novant’s plan to close the Marshall office in March.

But, the decision didn’t surprise him because the “population density there can’t really support” such an operation, Mr. Melton said.

To succeed, an urgent care center would need 10,000 to 15,000 people within a five-mile radius and have about 2,500 patients, Mr. Melton said.

As of last year, about 5,800 people lived within a five-miles radius of the Northern Fauquier village, according to the county’s Community Development Department.

He heard that the Marshall office had been treating fewer than four patients a day, Mr. Melton said. “They probably needed to be averaging 25 to 30 patients per day.”

Marshall also represents a tough market for a new urgent care service because it must compete with the “well-established” Countryside Family Practice at 8255 E. Main St., he said.

Norris Royston, the founding physician at Countryside, declined to comment for this article. Dr. Royston’s practice has four physicians, according to its website.

Fauquier Hospital maintains an independent but “friendly relationship” with Countryside Family Practice and Medicine, Mr. Melton said.

“We don’t try to compete with our community-based physicians,” he said.

Based in Winston-Salem, N.C., Novant operates hundreds of clinics and physican offices in four states. The not-for-profit corporation has hospitals in Haymarket and Manassas. It operates the Culpeper hospital with U.Va. Health.
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