New nurse practitioners clinic will expand personalized healthcare near UMN

The clinic will expand the University of Minnesota’s personalized care and mental health services.

Illustrated by Jane Borstad

Illustrated by Jane Borstad

by Lew Blank

The University of Minnesota opened a new nurse practitioners clinic Monday in an effort to expand personalized treatment and primary care for the University community.

Located in the University’s Clinics and Surgery Center on the East Bank campus, the clinic will allow students, faculty and members of the surrounding community to access the personalized treatment that nurse practitioners clinics offer. The clinic will provide patients with the opportunity to access multiple forms of care under one roof by adding primary care services to the wide variety of specialty treatments offered by the CSC.

The new clinic will be staffed by multiple professional nurse practitioners, some of which are paired with nursing graduate students from the University, said Mary Benbenek, the coordinator of the University’s family nurse practitioner program.

The nurse practitioners clinic will offer individualized, family-centered care in 30 to 60 minute sessions, which can be longer than typical visits to more traditional health care providers, said Jane Anderson, the director of the MHealth Nurse Practitioners Clinic System. 

“[Our perspective] is based on patient interaction,” Benbenek said. “Yes, we might take a little bit longer with a patient, but we’re trying to listen and hear their story.”

It will also screen for depression and anxiety at every appointment, even if mental health isn’t the initial reason for the visit, Anderson said.

Previously, the closest MHealth nurse practitioners clinic to the University was in downtown Minneapolis near U.S. Bank Stadium. The new on-campus site will be more convenient and accessible for faculty, students and staff, said Holly Boyer, the executive medical director at the CSC. 

The new location will also offer more extensive hours. While the downtown clinic is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, the new clinic will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and will accept walk-in appointments during that entire time, Boyer said.

“The goal is to have the right provider available for patients at the right time,” she said.

The clinic will also add primary care services — including physicals, women’s health and care for injuries and illnesses — to the specialty services already provided at the CSC. 

The CSC offers 37 medical specialties, including x-rays, pharmaceutical services, cardiology, neurology and dental therapy. The on-site nurse practitioners clinic will allow patients to transfer immediately from the clinic to a provider of specialty treatment in the same building, or vice versa, Anderson said.

“The CSC … is a huge new concept. It’s very progressive,“ she said. “It’s very nice for the patients that they don’t have to go to 10 different locations to get the care that they need.”