The General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital opened a new urgent care clinic to reduce wait times for non-emergency patients.The new clinic is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, and is located across the hall from the emergency room entrance. The Soldier-centered medical team sick call is also now temporarily located there from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m.According to Lt. Col. Sashi Zickefoose, Primary Care Service Line chief, its services are open to ID card holders, and Tricare Prime, Select and Direct Care can use the facility as well.Anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should visit the Harper Screening Facility, which can be reached by calling 573.596.3663.Zickefoose said the addition of an urgent care facility was necessary to provide patients with more health care opportunities.“The purpose is to provide another option to our beneficiaries outside of primary care and the emergency room,” Zickefoose said. “Wait times in our ER have been consistently high and a large majority of the patients seen were non-emergency type visits.”People seeking treatment should be aware of the difference in urgent care and emergency care options.“The emergency room is intended for things that may cause loss of life, limb or eyesight,” Zickefoose said. “Urgent care services are medically necessary services which are required for an illness or injury that would not result in further disability or death if not treated immediately, but require professional attention and have the potential to develop such a threat if treatment is delayed longer than 24 hours.”Zickefoose listed some conditions that are suitable for urgent care, but usually not emergency care.“Some problems you would come to urgent care for are urinary tract infections, cuts, bruises, eye or ear infections, minor fractures, strains and sprains, and rashes to list a few,” Zickefoose said.Although the facility has not been open long, Zickefoose said they are already seeing a change.“We have seen a decrease in the number of patients seen in the ER for non-emergent conditions,” Zickefoose said. “We are still monitoring the long-term impact to both ER and urgent care wait times, patient satisfaction and quality of care.”According to Zickefoose, the hospital plans to keep the new clinic open indefinitely.As a reminder, those with COVID-19 concerns need to contact Harper In-Processing Screening Clinic at 573.596.3663 for information on specific instructions and not go to the post hospital, urgent care or the ER.