Laughlin residents upset about plans to close Quick Care - 8 News NOW

Laughlin residents upset about plans to close Quick Care

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LAUGHLIN, Nev.  -- Many people in Laughlin are scrambling to find a new place to get medical care after University Medical Center announced last week it will be closing its Quick Care Clinic in the town.

The closure was discussed during a special town board meeting Tuesday. The meeting was packed with concerned people who rely heavily on the only UMC Quick Care Clinic in Laughlin.

"Taking a facility away from them, is to me, is irresponsible," UMC nurse Sharon Burchette said.

"Such actions send the message that UMC does not really care about Laughlin," Laughlin Town Manager Jackie Brady said.

Brady, along with dozens of other people, expressed their concern over plans to close the clinic next month.

"Why shut it down? Why not wait and see how things go? Look at other options, look at possibly streamlining processes and procedures. Don't just deny a whole community access to health care," Burchette said.

Even a Metro Police officer spoke out on why keeping the Quick Care open is important.

"If we make an arrest on a person, and there is a blood draw that needs to be done, or an individual is injured and we need them to be cleared, because we don't have nurse in the jail down here in the Laughlin jail," Ofc. John Heely said.

A UMC spokesperson Danita Cohen says the decision to shut down this Quick Care Clinic is strictly a budget one.

"When we have to make decisions on financing, it is tough. But we have to make those decisions when there are other choices available, in order to sustain UMC as a whole in order to keep alive our level one transplant unit, our level one trauma center," Cohen said.

Many patients who rely on the clinic say they need more time to find a primary doctor. Others are worried about getting to the nearest Quick Care Clinic, which is at least 80 miles away.

The other concern is the difference in paying for their Medicaid outside of Nevada, if they have to seek medical in Arizona.

UMC says they might extend the closure for just a few weeks since there is a physician in Laughlin willing to work with some patients.

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