July 12, 2024

The Chief Mag

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Pea Ridge Physician Engages With Small Business Development Center to Fill Healthcare Gap

2 min read

Dr. Alan Schumacher, Pea Ridge Urgent Care

Mary Beth Brooks

Dr. Alan Schumacher, Pea Ridge Urgent Care

Dr. Alan Schumacher, a board-certified family medicine physician, recognized the critical need for a clinic to provide comprehensive care to his neighbors in the Northwest Arkansas community of Pea Ridge. His plan to create a walk-in clinic that offered prompt access to quality care began to evolve.

On an initial visit to his lender at First Western Bank to discuss financing, Schumacher was directed to the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center for a consultation on the process of building the clinic. Together with ASBTDC Director Mary Beth Brooks, they developed a business plan and the financial projections needed for a loan package submission. “Mary Beth’s assistance was enormously informative,” Schumacher said. “Her personal engagement was incredible in assisting the new business launch.”

With a personal investment and funding through First Western Bank, Schumacher began building Pea Ridge Urgent Care. He engaged the necessary vendors for clinic equipment, technology and the benefits necessary for clinic staff.

April Landry was hired as the practice manager and became certified in medical billing and coding through a program at Northwest Arkansas Community College. Among other duties, she developed a list of specialists for referrals and created job descriptions for the necessary medical and administrative staff. Training for clinic employees began in January of 2024 with a projected clinic opening on April 1, 2024.

As with most small businesses, website development and brand strategy were major components. Schumacher was encouraged to get multiple opinions to compare the various options for web development, and a vendor was chosen that best addressed the needs of a business in a smaller community. “The clinic’s branding and website will serve to create trust with potential patients and convey a welcoming environment for the clinic,” said Rachel Majors, ASBTDC marketing consultant. “Mary Beth personally, and the staff at ASBTDC, were invaluable in their assistance at getting our project from concept to reality,” Schumacher said.

Right on schedule, Pea Ridge Urgent Care opened on April 1, 2024. The day before, members of the Pea Ridge City Council, Greater Bentonville Chamber of Commerce, the ASBTDC and other community members celebrated a ribbon-cutting and celebration.

With a current staff of 16 employees, Schumacher anticipates at least three more full-time positions within the next two to three months.

“The effects of the opportunity to work with ASBTDC has had, and will continue to have, long reaching and branching benefits,” Schumacher said. “This is true not only to us as a business entity, but for the employees, their families and for the entire community that now has healthcare services that would not otherwise be available.”



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