St. Jacobs residents will soon have their first ever walk-in clinic, set to open the first week of April.

Waterloo St. Jacobs Urgent Care will be a walk-in clinic and a family practice, so you can walk in without an appointment or make an appointment with the doctor ahead of time.

The clinic and family practice is being set up by Anjou Mehta Medical Consultancy (AMMC), which operates numerous clinics across Ontario.

Rakesh Mistry, general manager for AMMC, was on site this week working to get the clinic set up.

He says AMMC decided there was a need for this type of service in St. Jacobs and opening the clinic has been in the works for the past six months.

“What they found was that this location specifically was lacking urgent care and a walk-in facility. So obviously the plaza right beside us there’s the family practice, but they’re no longer accepting new patients,” Mistry said.

The St. Jacobs Pharmasave is also in the adjacent plaza for patients needing prescriptions filled.

The plan is for the clinic to offer more services for a broad range of people under one roof, making it a one-stop shop where everyone is welcome.

For example, they will have a physiotherapist on site. Down the line they’d like to add a registered massage therapist and an orthotics specialist.

They will have both male and female physicians, with the female physician starting right away. He says they are both local to the area.

“What we like to do is when we go to all these clinics I would say the first year you get going, the second, third and fourth year we start introducing a lot of specialists. So for example, one of the clinics that we have in Mississauga we started off as a walk-in urgent care facility. After two, three years we have pediatrics, cardiologists, gastroenterologists, we have an orthotic specialist. So we like to bring a broad range of services to people, so that way it’s easy for them, instead of travelling everywhere to find a specialist.”

It appears the need is real here, as they’ve only been advertising the clinic through the newspaper and flyers sent to local postal codes for two weeks, and they’ve already had 200 people call them, interested in having a new family doctor.

They want to have it set up as a lab as well, so they expect all the receptionists will be phlebotomy trained and able to take blood. They may even hire more if it gets too busy.

“We’re very strict with who we hire. I’ve had doctors come up to me asking me to help them because they can’t understand why people are having issues with their clinic, but you find that their staff are just being really rude to patients and it’s a reflection of them. We want to make sure everyone is working together at a good pace.”

They expect to be open six days a week, potentially every day. With all the staff already hired, all that’s left to do is put the medical equipment in the rooms and install the signage, which he expects will take about a week. Then cleaners will come to give the place a good scrub.

“We like to find doctors who are between finishing their residency, maybe all the way up into maybe 35-40. We want someone that’s going to be here for long-term, so that way if people are  going to have a family doctor, we don’t want them getting up and leaving. My doctor, I’ve had him for 25 years. I grew up with him. We want to have that established here too.”

They’re opening Apr. 3 and will be located at 820 King St. North on the first floor. For more information call 519-206-0211.